It is now possible to buy a Tesla (TSLA) vehicle with Bitcoin in the U.S., CEO Elon Musk announced yesterday via a tweet. Customers outside the U.S. will be able to do so later this year. Tesla stock fell.
In order for Tesla to accept Bitcoin, Musk said Tesla will be using internal and open source software. The company created a support page on its website to explain how to use Bitcoin to make purchases.
“This is a seminal moment for Tesla and for the crypto world,” said Wedbush analyst Daniel Ives in a note to clients. “We expect less than 5% of transactions to be through bitcoin over the next 12 to 18 months, however this could move higher over time as crypto acceptance starts to ramp over the coming years.”
The announcement comes after the company purchased $1.5 billion worth of bitcoin last month. Ives expects more purchases over the coming months. The current value of a bitcoin is $56,822.
Meanwhile, Model Y prices rose in China by around $1,200 on the locally produced car, bringing the total current cost to $53,000-$58,000. Customers who have already ordered cars will not be affected.
Tesla officials told a local news outlet it was due to cost fluctuations. Rising battery and raw materials costs could also be driving the increase. Meanwhile, a global chip shortage is hitting the auto industry and slowing production.
The Model Y hit the Chinese market in January 2021. Sales have been brisk. The China Passenger Car Association reported that Tesla sold 18,318 Shanghai-made Model 3s and Model Ys in February, up 8% increase from the 15,484 sold in January.
Tesla is on track to deliver more than 200,000 vehicles in China in 2021, which remains a linchpin for the company hitting its 750,000 to 800,000 annual numbers for the year, Ives said in an earlier note to clients.
Shares fell 1.5% to 652.05 on the stock market today. Tesla stock is down 38% from its intraday high of 900.40 on Jan. 25, according to MarketSmith chart analysis. Shares dipped as low as 539.49 earlier this month, and have been trading below their 50-day line since Feb. 22, when they triggered a sell signal.
Follow Adelia Cellini Linecker on Twitter @IBD_Adelia.
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