Although the expected rate deadline of Model 3 production for the first quarter has been missed - having produced only 2,020 of the affordable sedan vs. 2,500 expected - the vehicle has been reported to officially be the bestselling electric auto in the US (Electrek).
Although the most recent report represents another missed target, Tesla's investor communications were (unsurprisingly) positive. "Looking at it today we believe the demand outlook remains robust and unchanged", said Joseph Dennison, portfolio manager at Zevenbergen.
Tesla is trying to calm those fears by releasing its first quarter vehicle production and delivery statistics. That's four times what it made in the fourth quarter. The company is looking to scale up production further, guiding for a weekly production rate of 5k Model 3 cars in about three months.
24,728 of the cars manufactured were Model S and Model X vehicles, down 3,592 from the 28,320 luxury vehicles that Tesla pushed out in Q4 2017. This includes both production delays and the delay of high-profile options such as all-wheel drive and the standard battery which will finally enable the Model 3 to hit its highly touted $35,000 price tag. It's sticking with its plan to make about 5,000 units a week by the conclusion of the second quarter.
Shares of Tesla climbed more than 5% on Tuesday after the company said that the production of its Model 3 cars had gone up to about 10,000 since the beginning of 2018.
Tesla has a combination of $3.5 billion in negative cash flow as well as $1.8 billion of debt that are going to mature at the same time in November 2019.
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Tesla had previously set a goal to build around 2500 Model 3s per week by the end of March.
Musk, importantly, did not deny the fact stated in the report which claimed that Musk had taken control of Tesla's production.
Tesla ended up producing 289 Model 3s per day in the last week of March. Estimates are from analysts that the company has a few months more to live, given its cash reserves, before the firm will be forced to tap equity or debt markets once again.
If Tesla can indeed maintain its current production rate, it will crush its last results and there is no other EV that is expected to catch up.
But unfortunately for Musk, production of the mass-market Model 3 hasn't been as easy as he seemed to hope. The Model 3 output increased exponentially, representing a fourfold increase over last quarter.
Amid slowdowns in Model 3 production, Tesla has seen its shares drop nearly 18 percent since the beginning of the year. "If this rate of growth continues, it will exceed even that of Ford and the Model T".