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Tesla stock reels in $900 following Elon Musk’s big space achievement, analyst upgrades

Tesla's Made-In-China Model 3 gets its first customer deliveries. (Source: Tesla China | Twitter)

Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA) moves closer to the $900 mark after a big weekend for CEO Elon Musk. Musk qualified for the first tranche of his multibillion-dollar performance bonus, and SpaceX successfully launched two astronauts into space this past weekend. The electric automaker also received several upgrades from analysts based on Tesla’s future outlook in international markets.

Jairam Nathan of Daiwa Securities launched coverage of the automaker with a Buy rating and a $910 price target. He believes the electric automaker is a few short steps away from global dominance.

In a note to investors, Nathan wrote that Tesla is close to succeeding in international markets like China and Europe. Nathan believes that the company can have similar success in Europe and China, especially considering the Gigafactory production facilities that are being built in the two locations.

Simply put, Tesla is “on the cusp of replicating its success in the U.S. EV market to potentially larger markets in China and Europe,” the Daiwa analyst wrote, according to Barron’s.

Wedbush analyst Dan Ives also increased his price target from $600 to $800. Ives stated, “we continue to believe EV demand in China is starting to accelerate with Tesla competing with a number of domestic and international competitors for this market share.”

At the time of writing, Tesla stock traded at $873.95, up 4.66%, or $38.95.

The surge in price could be attributed to projections that the electric vehicle sector will skyrocket in 2021 based on a new report by Cairn Energy Research Advisors, CNBC reported. Sam Jaffe of Cairn stated, “There’s pent-up demand for electric vehicles. We will see a combination of factors make 2021 an inflection point for the sale of electric vehicles.”

Musk’s success over the weekend with the newly-earned bonus and successful SpaceX launch may have attributed to the stock price increase as well. SpaceX became the first privatized company to successfully launch NASA astronauts into orbit.

Currently, Tesla’s two international production facilities are located in Shanghai, China, and Brandenburg, Germany. Shanghai is now producing around 4,000 Model 3 vehicles a week, while Berlin is still under construction and is set to begin manufacturing in July 2021.

Giga Shanghai has been producing variants of the Model 3 since December 2019, but Tesla did not begin delivering built cars to public customers until January 2020. The first cars built in the facility were initially given to employees and not Chinese citizens.

Since the first Model 3s were delivered to China’s first buyers of what has come to be known as the “Made in China” versions of the sedan, Tesla has continued to ramp its production rates and introduce new configurations of the vehicle. Currently, construction crews are also working on the second phase of the Chinese vehicle manufacturing plant, where Tesla’s latest car, the Model Y crossover, will be built.

The steady demand for Tesla’s electric cars has allowed the company to be recognized as one of China’s most popular EV brands. In April 2020, the Model 3 was the second most popular electric car in China, trailing the Qin Pro EV from Xi’an-based BYD Automotive. This information is according to the EV Sales Blog, a website that tracks the sale of electric cars around the world.

In Germany, Tesla is continuing to push toward the groundbreaking of its Gigafactory in Brandenburg, a state encircled by Berlin. Giga Berlin will supply the European markets with Tesla’s electric vehicles. The construction of this Gigafactory has encountered barriers from COVID-19 and residents’ concerns, but Tesla has managed to remain on schedule thanks to support from German politicians.

The Giga Berlin facility will employ 12,000 people, providing a positive impact on Germany’s economy.

Nathan’s outlook of dominance in Europe and China is backed by Tesla’s willingness to become a foreign automaker and establish a presence in countries other than the United States. With substantial support from the massive Chinese automotive market and European countries, there is plenty of speculation that Tesla will thrive even more when the company establishes production facilities in foreign lands.

Disclosure: I have no ownership in shares of TSLA and have no plans to initiate any positions within 72 hours.

Tesla stock reels in $900 following Elon Musk’s big space achievement, analyst upgrades
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