Why Elon Musk’s Claim of 200,000 Cybertruck Preorders Probably Won’t Become 200,000 Sales

Elon Musk grins
TOBIAS SCHWARZ /Getty

Tesla shares rose Monday in early trading after CEO Elon Musk claimed over the weekend that the company has seen 200,000 preorders for the Cybertruck following a disastrous public demonstration in which the vehicle’s windows shattered before a live audience. But unlike previous Tesla preorders, the Cybertruck preorder only requires a refundable $100 deposit, leading to questions about how valid the preorder numbers actually are.

Musk tweeted Sunday that Cybertruck has seen 200,000 preorders so far, with 146,000 of those orders coming on Friday or Saturday. But the figure could be deceptive since Tesla is requiring only a $100 refundable deposit for the new electric vehicle, a figure that is substantially less than the deposits required for other Tesla models.

Tesla critics and journalists on social media were quick to point out the potential for deception in Musk’s numbers, along with the fact that he has faced sanctions from the SEC for his use of Twitter to move the stock in his favor:

Wall Street didn’t seem to mind the potential for grade inflation, sending Tesla shares up more than 5 percent before the bell Monday, although the stock gave back much of the gains in regular trading hours.

Tesla shares plummeted Friday by more than 6 percent following the Cybertruck demonstration in Los Angeles during which two windows unexpectedly shattered on impact after Musk sent metallic balls hurtling at them to prove their invincibility.

In an attempt to minimize negative publicity, Musk tweeted over the weekend that the windows shattered because the base of the glass was already cracked following an earlier demonstration that used a sledgehammer to show the door’s resilience.

“Should have done steel ball on window, *then* sledgehammer the door,” Musk tweeted.

Video footage from Friday’s demonstration quickly went viral, proving to be a major embarrassment for Tesla. In the video, Musk can be heard exclaiming, “Oh my fucking God” following the first shattered window. Another ball cracked a second window on the vehicle.

Forbes estimated that Musk’s net worth fell $768 million to $23.6 billion over the weekend as a result of the drop in Tesla’s stock.

Musk has claimed that the Cybertruck is set to start production in late 2021 and that a tri-motor version is expected to begin production in 2022.

Follow David Ng on Twitter @HeyItsDavidNg. Have a tip? Contact me at dng@breitbart.com

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