Tesla has said it plans to deliver the first Model X electric crossover in the coming months, after multiple delays.
If nothing else, the increased presence of prototype vehicles on public roads seems to indicate greater activity surrounding the vehicle.
Recently, a dark blue Model X was spotted in what could be close to production-ready trim.
The car did not have any camouflage, but its front and rear bumpers (as well as the trim on the tailgate) were covered in plastic wrap.
Material like this is often used to protect new cars during transport, so that they arrive at their final destinations without any rock chips, scratches, or other blemishes.
Tesla Model X prototype [by Silicon Valley Teslas]
This could indicate a car that's nearly ready for delivery, or perhaps Tesla still has some details of the production version to hide.
Tesla says more than 20,000 buyers have put down deposits for the highly-anticipated Model X.
But exactly when it will arrive in significant numbers is still somewhat up in the air.
In a June financial results call, Tesla CEO Elon Musk said the company planned to begin deliveries in "three to four months."
That means the first vehicles could be delivered next month.
Tesla Model X prototype [by Tesla Motors Club forum user Mulder1231]
We recently reported that Tesla still has not placed orders with suppliers for certain components necessary for volume production.
Allowing time for tooling, testing, and a steady ramp up of component production will likely push volume deliveries back a few months.
Using hand-fabricated substitutes, Tesla could build some Model X production vehicles--perhaps under 1,000--allowing it to claim deliveries by the end of the current quarter.
A full production ramp up may not occur until December, or possibly even January, though.
[hat tip: Brian Henderson]