An interesting question arose on Tuesday as one astute observer in the automobile industry noticed an anomaly and put forth a very simple query on Twitter: is Tesla registering more vehicles than it needs in the Netherlands to boost its Q1 numbers?
The man asking that question was Matthias Schmidt who is a journalist for the AID Newsletter, the self described "Leading Auto Industry Trend & Market Intelligence Journal" in Europe. He put out a tweet on Tuesday with a link to an independently run Tesla inventory website.
In his tweets, he noted that a significant number of vehicles all seem to have the exact same mileage on them and be in the same location: 50km, parked in The Netherlands.
Of course, this raises the obvious question as to whether or not there could be some "registration channel stuffing" going on.
By manipulating the drop down menu on the inventory page, it looks as though areas like Great Britain also have a significant number of parked vehicles with just 50km on them.
This interesting point comes at a very crucial time for Tesla. We have been reporting diligently on the company and all of the troubles it has faced so far in 2018. We will add this giant question mark to the list which now stands at:
- NTSB investigation that put the company at a public feud with the NTSB
- An initial workplace safety investigation by the state of California
- A second reported workplace safety investigation, reported on Friday
- A securities fraud class action lawsuit against Musk claiming he knew he was going to miss Model 3 targets for 2017
- This contract worker lawsuit
- CNBC article detailing poor vetting of suppliers, leading to a pile up of malfunctioned parts
- Reports of the company cutting corners as it relates to their pre-owned vehicles
- Reveal article alleging the company is underreporting its safety incidents at its Fremont factory
- Recent massive recall of 125k Model S sedans
- A scathing review of the company's possible future (or lack thereof) in Automotive News by Keith Crain
- A Harvard Law School blog that seems to side with plaintiffs who have brought suit against Tesla for its acquisition of Solar City
- Questions raised about whether or not Tesla is registering cars to meet Q1 numbers
We'll stay on the case.