Tesla Motors to Build a Pickup Truck? - Analyst Blog

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Although shares of Tesla Motors ( TSLA ) have slumped in recent sessions, investor interest in the stock remains sky-high. And thanks to the latest comments from Tesla's CEO Elon Musk, we could see even more demand for TSLA shares by retail investors.

This is because at a Business Insider IGNITION event in New York City on Tuesday , Musk declared that Tesla was planning on making a truck modeled off of Ford's ( F ) ultra-popular F-Series. In order words, Musk and Tesla are looking at getting into pickup trucks for one of the next rounds of growth for this impressive company.

The comment came after Elon was asked a question regarding whether Tesla would someday make an electric fleet of vehicles for major delivery companies. Elon rejected this notion, declaring that the market was too small and that the focus would be on pickup trucks instead.

Impact

The first Tesla Pickup is likely still at least five years away based on Musk's own admission in the interview. However, this is truly a huge market and the potential for an electric truck is enormous.

After all, many trucks get little in gas mileage so an electric vehicle could produce plenty of savings from this look. Current F-150s have a combined MPG of between 13-17, producing an average fuel cost of between $2,900-$3,800 year, according to fuel economy.gov .

Lithium-ion batteries are still quite expensive though, so it appears unlikely that Tesla will be able to compete with lower-end versions of the F-150 for this huge market. Current MSRPs for the ' limited' edition of the F-150 are coming in above $50,000 though, so Tesla might be able to gain some market share in this segment down the road.

Obviously, it will depend on pricing and if a pickup can attract the same level of fan interest that we have seen in the car market for Tesla products. Also, it is important to remember that this may be quite a ways in the future, and that Tesla might focus on cheaper cars before pivoting to the pickup truck market later.

Bottom Line

While this is pretty much just initial speculation, the preliminary discussion of a Tesla Pickup could be very exciting for the long term. Investors and customers have already shown an incredible level of interest in the company, and it stands to reason that a pickup truck might be another great market for TSLA to tap into in the near future.

In terms of an investment right now, TSLA has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold), while Ford has a top Zacks Rank of 1. Additionally, the automotive-domestic industry is ranked in the top five percent right now, so this could be an interesting time to scoop up some automotive shares, or to take another look at TSLA following this announcement while it is still well-off from recent highs.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc.



This article appears in: Investing , Business , Stocks

Referenced Stocks: F , TSLA

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