Tesla has shaken off an eventful first few months of the year to produce and deliver a record number of cars in the second quarter. Its pivotal Model 3 accounted for a large portion of that, and the company is optimistic it can put in an even greater performance in the coming months on the back of growing demand for its electric cars.
The early months of the year saw Tesla deal with the departure of its CFO Deepak Ahuja, tumbling stock prices, significant debts to contend with and, ultimately, a first quarter loss of around US$700 million.
Its second quarter results paint a much brighter picture, with the company building a record 87,048 cars and delivering a record 95,200. Of those delivered, 77,500 were Model 3s and 17,650 were Model S and Model Xs. To illustrate how the company is tracking, in the same quarter last year, its most productive quarter at the time, it managed to make a total of 53,339 vehicles.
Elon Musk said earlier in the year that he expects Tesla to deliver an estimated 400,000 cars in 2019, and the latest figures suggest that this mightn't be far off the mark.
But just for some perspective, this is still a drop in the ocean compared to other US manufacturers such as Ford and General Motors, who pump out six to seven million vehicles a year, and Japan's Toyota who outputs around 10 million a year (though these legacy automakers produce largely internal combustion cars).
Tesla looks set to build on its numbers in the coming quarter, claiming it has improved its logistics and delivery operations. More importantly, it says the orders taken during the quarter have outstripped its deliveries, and therefore its backlog has continued to build.
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