I’m onboard with the concept that the 72kwh model effectively subsidized the 60kwh model for market penetration. Like everyone else says, it’s not really product binning (like CPUs)
This is far more like Microsoft OS pricing. The cost to develop the product was the same, but if you market a lower configuration for less price, you get more market. Some of that market will later choose a higher tier because the value is there.
Yes it’s shiesty to do this, but if you sold everything at the lower tier, the product wouldn’t exist to begin with.
One of the missing pieces of data that we won’t probably get will answer this: does the sale of the 72kwh vehicle at the 60kwh price keep the margins positive, and is there a clear target point where the incentivised sales of the 60kwh model cross into the same cost as the 72?
If Tesla was a “good” corporation, they would at some point activate all 60kwh vehicles to become 72. If they are a “bad” corporation, they would continue the market divergence.
Good and bad mean different things to different people too. Investors would see “bad” (from the article perspective) as as “good” because their investment is maximized.
Since Tesla recently discontinued the 60kwh model, I think k they walked a middle line: the 72kwh subsidization program was a success, but due to investor steering, could not set a precedent for free upgrades of the 60kwh vehicles unless there was some good excuse - which we just saw.
Someone in charge of the financial model for this whole thing had to consider the golden handcuffs of outside investment and probably made lemonade from lemons.