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Tesla's Model X will launch in September

Tesla's Model X will launch in September


A 'small number' of deliveries will begin in Q3

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The Model X will indeed launch in September, Tesla confirmed today in its quarterly letter to shareholders. Deliveries to the crossover's first buyers will begin in late Q3, although Tesla expects only a "small number" will make it out during the quarter. "We are building more validation vehicles, executing final engineering and testing work, enabling our new manufacturing equipment and finalizing arrangements with our suppliers," CEO Elon Musk wrote in the letter. "We have been producing release candidate Model X bodies in our new body shop equipped with more than 500 robots as we fine-tune and validate our production processes."

The Model X is being built alongside the Model S at Tesla's Fremont, California plant, with both cars sharing the same assembly line. Tesla says it recently wrapped up a weeklong shutdown of the plant, during which it manufactured "several" test Model X vehicles. Production has been pushed back numerous times; at one point, Tesla originally aimed to start Model X deliveries by the end of 2014. But September has been the new target for several months running — Musk said "two months" back in July — and the company seems very confident that it'll arrive on schedule.

That's not to say there aren't challenges; Tesla says unforeseen issues with even a single supplier, should any arise, "could reduce Model X production by approximately 800 units for the quarter." The automaker is also cautioning that any Model X production difficulties could potentially slow the rate at which Model S vehicles leave the assembly line. “The Model X is a particularly hard car to build. Maybe the hardest car in the world to build," Musk said during Tesla's earnings call later in the afternoon. But he seems largely unfazed. "I think it’s going to blow people away."