What Is Tesla Worth? According To Goldman It Depends If Elon Musk Is Steve Jobs, A Maytag Repairman, Or Henry Ford

Tyler Durden's picture

Goldman Sachs is bearish on TSLA with a $200 price target (currently trading at $236) but... provides bulls with all the hope they need to justify stock prices rising to at least $478. Laying out 5 scenarios on the company's path to 2025, the analyst shies from his base-case and downside-risk perspective to reflect on the possibility that TSLA is truly disruptive. Depending on whether Elon Musk is Steve Jobs (iPhone projections), Henry Ford (Model T projections), or a Maytag Repairman (Consumer Durable projections), TSLA's upside is enormous as all of our three “disruptive outcomes” imply meaningful upside to the current share price. Of course, the probability assocoated with each of these scenarios is why Goldman's overall target is 15% below current prices - but that won't stop the dreamers.


Adding rigor to the upside analysis
We quantify the option value of Tesla shares through a deep dive into the lessons learned from past disruptive technologies as well as the opportunity from stationary storage. Our new 6-month price target rises to $200.

Automotive business worth $180
If Tesla’s auto business were to be truly disruptive (to the whole auto industry, not just luxury vehicles), then there would be considerable upside.

Keying off the history of the iPhone, (adjusting for the replacement cycle) would imply 3.1mn units by 2025 and a PV of $442 per share.

The Model-T trajectory implies 3.3mn units and $478 per share;

and the volume implied by a basket of transformative durable goods (laundry appliances/dishwashers/refrigerators) gets us 1.8mn units and $329 per share.

However, this is offset by our base case (broadly unchanged from our previous forecast) and a downside case where Tesla’s present value is lower and hence we arrive at probability weighted share price of $180 for the auto business alone.



Full Goldman Sachs research note below:

Tsla Goldman

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Johnny Cocknballs's picture

That's a long way to go to make a mostly uneducated guess.  

I can guess too!  140.

Will JCB beat GS again? Tune in later, eh, 6 months, to find out!


P.s. this thing can fly, right?

Occident Mortal's picture

Except Telsa are building the company on the wrong batteries.


The only way the electric car market will work is if you have a liquid battery. Allowing you to pump out a dead battery and pump in a charged battery all in the space of about 30 seconds, and without the need for any new or special skills from the consumer.


Solid state batteries are worse than petroleum fuels.


Musk doesn't seem to understand that Tesla needs an electrolyte or it's dead in the water. Building a gigfactory based on old technology (solid batteries) is a precarious strategy and it's fundamentally not what Ford or Jobs did.

creativity19's picture

Tesla is without a doubt the most worthless stock ever pumped by Jim Cramer. Nothing would please me more than to see this company in full liquidation!


Sudden Debt's picture

Whenever this guy likes a stock, you sell it and don't look back.

OpenThePodBayDoorHAL's picture

Let's see, a company that has lost $1 billion over the last three years and has sold 27,000 vehicles in total. At a higher market cap than a company that sells 27,000 cars per day including weekends (GM).

Sudden Debt's picture

exact, it's nothing more than combined laptop batteries. The tesla under the hood looks more like a school project with a ipad attached to it than a car.

And what always bothers me about my laptops is that the batteries start to suck after one year.

I'm very interested in the first one who will invent a economical fuel cell that runs on a small liquid charge. And if I'm able to buy 20 charges at the same time and store them in my house of in my car it would be even a lot better.

The battery charging is mostly fine when the car is new but after 1 year the party is over. And that's what you already see at the Tesla's that his the second hand market after 1 year which have electrical or battery problems.

Tesla isn't worth more than 40 to maximum 60 dollars and I wouldn't be a buyer at 60. To much risk that the "investors" now ignore.

Also, why would you buy a company that never run a profit and needs government aid to keep the machine running?

I'm not a buyer of GM, Tesla...

If I would buy a car company it would be Toyota for sure.

ExploitedCitizen's picture

Agree 100%

Tesla was a novelty when it started and still is, that is a problem.

Until they get cars in the $35k range, this company won't get the volume it needs to be economical.

And really, that is what the car is, laptop batteries, a steering wheel, and giant Ipad.

Pool Shark's picture




The batteries alone cost more than that.

Until battery technology advances about 50 years, electric cars make no sense. They're a plaything for upper-class liberal/environmentalists who never take the time to consider the pollution they cause is merely transferred off-site...


slotmouth's picture

I'm very excited about Tesla too I am raising my price target from $33 to $40.

Seer's picture

"P.s. this thing can fly, right?"

Silly person, anything can fly!  The ISSUE is for how long and how it lands (whether you can do it again)... Pretty much everything you see now is going to be put to that test as we/it all go over the "cliff."

Gringo Viejo's picture

Elmer Gantry. Where's the fire extinguisher?

Rising Sun's picture

electric cars failed in the 1920s and finally left the road in the 1940s


somehow electricity has changed in the last 70-80 years


diesel and natgas are the future - cities are converting to both


diesel technology has drastically changed


80K electric car - FUCK YOU ELON - how about one for 10K asshole??

Bonapartist's picture

10K? right- and have to rub elbows with the non-Silicon Valley unwashed proletariat?

Charles Nelson Reilly's picture

I'm getting 40mpg+ with my diesel VW.  While the sticker price was a bit more and diesel is more expensive, it still will pay off on the long haul.

Bosch's picture

Do you do a lot of interstate driving?  I considered one but most of my 10,000 miles a year are with 15 minutes of my house in city driving & didn't seem like it would pay off. 

Charles Nelson Reilly's picture

not a lot of highway, but an 8 mile stretch in the AM & PM on my way to the train station.  Still getting just north of 500 miles per tank.  We use it as our primary family car.  I plan on having it for over 10 years, so the investment will pay for itself.

Seasmoke's picture

So you paid I higher sticker price. You pay higher pump prices. And you still expect to make out in 10 years. Good luck. 

Bonapartist's picture

$22k out the door, 0% financing for 60 months and 48mpg in wife's Prius.

TheOldMan's picture

Only ten years? I have three cars with an average age of 17 years and 135000 miles.

Seer's picture

I've got an old diesel truck.  No fucking idea of it's fuel mileage, as it's a farm truck.  BUT, I DO know that it is more economical that a comparable gas, and, well, an electrical truck?  Ha ha!

"it still will pay off on the long haul"

Well, no.  Nothing will.  That is, unless you're actually using it to generate revenue (otherwise it's a non-producing asset).  Realistic claim can be that it drains your wealth less than other things...

BTW - Are they using a bunch of computer stuff to control your engine?  I like diesels, but it seems that they've taken a simple design and made it WAY too complex, which means shit around the core engine itself is going to be breaking (and VW just doesn't seem very competent in the electrical category- about every other VW on the road has simple lighting ground problems, FOR YEARS!): this is why I opted for an older diesel that doesn't have any electronics (except a GPC that's about $70 to replace).  All said, several years ago I did encourage some folks to purchase a VW diesel over a hybrid: that was before it was found out that Toyota was over-stating their vehicles' fuel mileage, so their decision ended up being even better.

crunchyfrog's picture

Electric car technology has changed at least as much as diesel in that same 80 years.

Singelguy's picture

Diesel and nat gas are finite energy sources. When those run out or become harder to find and extract (think much higher prices at the pump) what comes next?

A 10k car? Dream on! You know that is not economically viable. A 25k car is a different story. How much does a Prius, Volt, or Leaf cost? A hell of a lot more than 10k. Musk is anything but stupid and he has plans for a more mass market . Unfortunately auto manufacturing is very capital intensive, and although Musk is a billionaire he does not have the capital to roll out a mass market model. His approach is sound and logical. Start with a high end, high profit margin sports car, followed by a luxury high profit margin sedan. A luxury SUV is the next model in the works. The profits from the sale of those models will provide the capital to expand more into the mass market. He has taken advantage of the "green" agenda to get him the start up capital he needed to get Tesla off the ground. Given his success so far, it is highly probable that Tesla will become self sustaining and profitable.

Bonapartist's picture

We're closer to using wood burning cars than battery powered cars. Good luck driving your Tesla or Leaf very far in the Midwest on a -20 degree day.

adr's picture

A Prius starts at $18k, but that isn't what Tesla needs to worry about. The E-Up is going to be around $24k and beat Tesla to the mass market electric car by at least five years.

Tesla isn't profitable. The only way they showed profit was through accounting gimmicks so there hasn't been any success. Manufacturing ultra luxury cars isn't profitable. You would think VW makes money on a Bugatti when it costs $2-4 million, but no they lose money on every single one. Tesla is like Maybach, very cool but never profitable.

The Mercedes S class is less profitable than the E class, but what the S Class does is drive sales of the lower models. Mercedes sold 1.46 million vehicles globally. With many divisions and models. But Dailmer is a much larger company than just Mercedes. Massive profits from other divisions can be used to fund money losing halo cars. Tesla doesn't have that luxury.

The Supercharger network and free battery replacements will cause a huge drawdown on Tesla's bottom line. If there ever is a mass market Tesla there is no way the Supercharger network can be free for buyers of the Model E. Even with advancements in solar tech the panels still only last around ten years and in no way would be able to handle the charging needs of even 1000 cars on a single roadway. Think of the number of cars that stop at a turnpike gas station every day. Can a Tesla Supercharger station even handle 1/100th of that?

Seer's picture

You're funny!

"Diesel and nat gas are finite energy sources."

"it is highly probable that Tesla will become self sustaining and profitable."

 Finte planet and yet, magically, we can have something be self-sustaining that is not NATURAL (and requires perpetual growth itself).

By "Diesel" I'm sure that you're referring to the fuel and not the (engine) design.  Diesel fuels can be non-fossil-fuel based, generally referred to as "biodiesel" (subset of the group referred to as "biofuels"); they can also be WVO, or Waste Vegetable Oil.  All of these are considered "renewable."

Do you realize that electricity in the US is primarily derrived from the burning of coal?  Solar and wind generated electricity, by contrast, is a very small percentage.  Hydro and biomass are other means of fuelling the generation of electricity and are considered renewable.

The bulk of humanity lives on $3/day or less.  By diverting electrical production to vehicle transport it only further strains their ability to live.  But, Musk doesn't give a flying fuck, which is why he's targeting the rich (serve your masters).

ejmoosa's picture

So I pulled up a list of refueling stations for both natural gas and electric for a hypothetical trip from Atlanta to Panama City Beach.


You ain't taking that trip with natural gas....



Stoploss's picture

Pull the government plug, and this turd dies the next day...

Pipe dream on steroids.

highly debtful's picture

How many cars did this guy sell up til now?

PlusTic's picture

same story as ethanol...it don't work if the gov't aint subsidizing it...next

Defenestratus's picture

I keep bringing this up to my friend who is a big Tesla homer... and his reply is ... "YEAH BUT THEY REPAID THAT LOAN SIX YEARS EARLY!!!"


Seer's picture

I spent my personal time and energy (totally unrelated to any of my revenue-based activities) and fought the ethanol crusade.  It's the ugliest fucking idea that we could have ever come up with: shift food-producing land to fuel subsidized Hummers.  And, of course, asking everyone to subsidize this miserable idea.

AchtungAffen's picture

Sorry to pee on your punch, but Brazil has been doing ethanol since the days of the oil crisis. That was before they even discovered offshore oil. So yeah, ethanol can work. Except where there are oil companies to fuck it up...

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater's picture

If Goldman says to short, then it must be a screaming buy.

EveningInAmerica's picture

Henry Ford, Maytag, or Steve Jobs?

Where's the Freddie Mac projection? Or the Ken Lay projection?



DavosSherman's picture

Are they insulting the Maytag Repairman?

Seer's picture

Actually, now that production is off-shored and profits come before quality, it's the "Maytag Replaceman."  If Tesla's cars end up being as "reliable" as Maytag shit then expect them to last about 1/3, or less, than what older, standard vehicles last.

Bosch's picture

What about if he is just Crazy Eddie? 

skwid vacuous's picture

what if he's just a megalomaniacal ass-clown feeding off "green" gov't teet and stock mkt "irrational exuberance" 

Sudden Debt's picture

valuation pf 850k per sold car... get real... that stock is way overvalued...

crash commando's picture

Steve Jobs would never have tweeted bullshit about hyperloops or free battery replacement everytime his stock took a downturn.  I'd say P.T. Barnum with some engineering and a shitzillion dollars.

Sudden Debt's picture

let's first see if they can run a profit before they start handing out free stuff.

It may work in Venezuela and Cuba but in my world everything cost money.

adr's picture

The VW group sold 9.3 million vehicles globally last year.

That includes:

  • Volkswagen
  • Audi
  • Porsche
  • Seat
  • Skoda
  • Bentley
  • Bugatti
  • Lamborghini 
  • VW Commercial
  • and a couple of emerging market brands

All told there are probably over 1000 different car models sold in just about every country in the world. Cars ranging from about $5,000 to over $1 million. VW is huge in China and South America and the E-Golf and E-Up have already beat Tesla in the race for an affordable electric car.

How the fuck is Tesla going to sell 1/3rd the number of the VW group globally within ten years? They only have one model right now and the average transaction price is over $80k. Total global sales of cars over $75k are less than 500k units, so to even think Tesla can sell 1 million Model S cars is the dream of a lunatic. The Model X isn't going to be ready for sale until at least 2018 after all the delays. Every single sales evaluation shows that a SUV model will cannibalize sales of a sedan. The vaunted Model E or whatever it will be called is a 2020 proposition at the earliest, and will still cost north of $40k.

There isn't a plausible scenario where Tesla can get to 3.3 million units sold by 2025. Not with three car models. Not without a foothold in every single market for automobiles. Good luck getting a supercharger infrastructure in SE Asia.

Oh and I forgot Man and Scania trucks and buses that are included in the 9.3 million vehicles. Sales of those are a large part of the overall numbers. So Tesla needs a commerical division and to make city buses as well.

Sudden Debt's picture

Indeed, another very good point. They sold 24K cars in total so far.

And another point is:

Tesla wants to own the entire supply chain from A to Z. That's a communist model. You need a lot of capitalist people who can get rich on it and who are willing to fight for the business. Tesla only wants their own servs and the entire cooky.

That never works. And also, it slows down the entire growth plan while their life cycle of their product is ticking.

Apple's iPhone life cycle has also already passed it's half time. It won't come back. Now they need another product.

And for god's sake... a iPhone changed the world. Another electrical car with bigger batteries isn't changing my life.

Seer's picture

Entire supply chains with the kind of volume that Tesla's looking at almost certainly guarantees that the suppliers won't be able to operate as independent entities and that they'll need to be absorbed.

Plain and simple: in an economies-of-scale world in which economies of scale are reversing how likely is a low-volume producer going to be able to capture a market dominated by other producers producing exponentially higher volume products?

Carbon Beach's picture

Tesla = money laundering

Radical Marijuana's picture

Elon Musk appears to epitomize not merely superficial "money laundering," but rather that the entire financial system is fundamentally based upon fraud, wherein "success" is based upon being able to promote the buzz words and bullshit that is consistent with "success" due to being able to operate within that fundamentally fraudulent financial accounting system.

The profound and growing paradox is that "success" is based upon being able to operate as a professional liar, and immaculate hypocrite, in which context believing in one's own lies, by being able to operate through willful blindness and deliberate ignorance, works best, to impress other people, who are doing similar things, within the same overall context.


Elon Musk, and Tesla, are thoroughly developed forms of that kind of shameless lies and hypocrisy. They remind me of putting President Andrew Jackson's face on the Federal Reserve Note $20 bill, as being about as extreme an insult added to injury that is possible, inasmuch as the deeper realities of what they are doing could hardly be more opposite to the superficial symbols that they communicate through!

Defenestratus's picture

I still don't think that Americans want to drive what amounts to a vacuum cleaner around.

When you press the go pedal - it should make some kind of noise.

(Also I'm not waiting more than 5 minutes to refuel my vehicle)


adr's picture

One million cars will result in around 10k accidents minimum. That will result in a lot of uncontrollable lithium fires.

Seer's picture

And that's NOT including all the "refueling" fires (which are likely going to start stressing home-owner/renters insurance policies [got a good smoke detector?]).