The Updated Model S Plaid (Image: Tesla)

2020 was a breakout year for Tesla:

Tesla’s stock price was up 831% in 2020

This was calculated from opening at $84.90 (split-adjusted) on January 2 to $705.67 at closing on December 31, with a low of $72.24 on March 18 at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. On the day of the 2020 Q4 Earnings Call, Tesla's stock price closed at $864.16, up 22.4% YTD for 2021.

Tesla reached its delivery goal of 500,000 cars

Technically, they delivered 499,647 cars (according to their 2020 Q4 Shareholder Deck). Many did not see this happening during the COVID-19 pandemic, but Tesla delivered on its goal.

Tesla joined the S&P 500 on Dec 21 (announced on Nov 16)

Tesla was initially rejected for inclusion in the S&P 500 after four consecutive quarters of profit, but after five consecutive quarters of profit, it was announced on November 16 that Tesla would join the S&P 500 on December 21. The stock surged 73% in the final six weeks of 2020, boosted by its inclusion into the S&P 500, which forced index funds to buy into Tesla.

Tesla’s Full-Self Driving (FSD) Beta program

FSD Beta was launched in October 2020, pushing Tesla closer and closer to full autonomous driving. On the earnings call, Elon Musk said about 1,000 people in the San Francisco Bay Area participate in the Beta program.

These Beta testers have been releasing numerous YouTube videos describing their positive experiences.

Increase in Tesla Superchargers

2,564 Tesla Supercharger Stations (up from 2,181 in Q3)

23,277 Superchargers (up from 19,437 in Q3)

Tesla Superchargers in the United States, as of January 2021 (Image: Tesla)

Tesla Battery Day (Sept 22)

Tesla's Battery Day received far less fanfare than other major events of 2020, where they announced breakthroughs in battery development.

Tesla Battery Day (Image: Tesla)

Tesla's Q4 Safety Report

Tesla released its Q4 Safety Report, claiming that cars using its Autopilot drove 7x safer than the national average for car accidents (according to the NHTSA report), although Elon Musk was suggesting that they could achieve 20x safety on the earnings call.

Image: Tesmanian

Gigafactory Shanghai

Giga Shanghai began production of the Model Y in December 2020. According to Tesla's 2020 Q4 Shareholder Deck, Giga Shanghai has an annual production capacity of 450,000 or roughly 8,654 cars per week. This is higher than an earlier estimate of 8,000 cars per week.

Gigafactory Shanghai Model Y General Assembly (Image: Tesla)

Gigafactory Shanghai Model Y Body Shop (Image: Tesla)

Gigafactory Shanghai Factory (Image: Tesla)

According to Tesla's 2020 Q4 Shareholder Deck, the combined production capacity of Giga Shanghai and the Fremont Factory can exceed one million cars per year (about 1,050,000), which would more than double their vehicle deliveries from 2020 (about 500,000).

The Updated Model S (0-60mph in under 2 seconds)

Updated Model S, Front Interior with 17” Display (Image: Tesla)

Updated Model S, Rear Interior (Image: Tesla)

Wireless and USB-C fast charging for smartphones (Image: Tesla)

New rear seat display with wireless controller compatibility for gaming (Image: Tesla)

In 2021, we're eagerly expecting . . .

  • Tesla Cybertruck
  • Green-friendly energy policies from the Biden administration
  • Tesla reaching new markets in India and Israel
  • The completion of Gigafactory Berlin and Gigafactory Texas
  • Maybe . . . the release of Full-Self Driving