The drive to increase production at all costs by Elon Musk clearly paid off as Tesla shipped 80 percent more cars than the same period last year. The company even beat Wall Street estimates.
Elon Musk has been laser focused on production at his car company Tesla this year, with particular attention on the Model 3. With Q3 now over, the production numbers are in and the hard work seemingly paid off. Tesla beat Wall Street expectations and managed to deliver 83,500 vehicles during the last quarter.
As CNBC reports, 83,500 vehicles were delivered compared to a previously estimated 80,500. In total, 80,142 vehicles were produced during the quarter, which was split between 53,239 Model 3 sedans and 26,903 Model S variants. Most impressive of all was the improvement over the same period last year. Compared to 2017, deliveries were up 80 percent.
The huge increase in production was mainly due to Musk’s focus on the Model 3. He made sure the production lines became more efficient and then switched to running them 24/7. More recently, the color options offered were reduced for further efficiency gains, then in the final week of Q3, Tesla Direct was introduced. It offered free delivery to your home or office for inventory Model S, Model X, or the Performance Model 3 vehicles.
Such good news for Tesla is soured somewhat when only last week Elon Musk was fined $20 million and removed as Tesla chairman all because of a tweet regarding taking Tesla private. While he remains CEO of the car company, a new independent chairman must now be put in place. If the appointment brings more stability, investors will be happy but Musk must be a little sore.
We’ve known since last year that Tesla intends to build a factory in Shanghai to supply the Chinese market and avoid high import tariffs (40 percent). We also know Tesla will be allowed to build 500,000 electric cars a year there. Building of that factory is thought to be speeding up, which will bring even greater production online.
The one big question that remains unanswered is how profitable is Tesla? Everyone, including the company’s investors, would love to know.