Friday, 22 February, 2019


Tesla reports profit as issues stabilise

Lucy Nicholson  Reuters Lucy Nicholson Reuters
Conrad Doyle | 01 February, 2019, 23:23

Speaking to analysts following Tesla's Q4 earnings report, CEO Elon Musk said he estimates global Model 3 demand to reach 700,000 to 800,000 units per year in a strong economy.

Whether or not Tesla can continue its momentum will be determined by the future of the Model 3, the electric sedan to which Tesla has tied its fortunes, amid economic headwinds that include potential tariffs and the end of electric vehicle tax credits in the United States.

"Zach's incredibly talented, has made a huge contribution to Tesla over the years, and obviously very well known to the whole team and has the respect of the whole team", Musk said.

The California-based firm said in a statement that Chinese customers will be allowed to place orders for a long range, rear-wheel-drive Model 3 variant whose price will start at 433,000 yuan ($64,300.56).

Yet, as Model 3 expansion efforts and production ramp progress in 2019 across the globe, Tesla should realize significant economies of scale.

At the time, CNBC reported that Morton had clashed with Musk over the latter's plans to take Tesla private. "And it could be a lot more than that, but even with tough economic times to see 50 percent growth is pretty nutty". In this, it'll be something more aligned with the Model X SUV's pricing.

But in a letter to investors published last night, he conceded that Tesla should be able to make 10,000 of the vehicles by the end of 2019.

The bull vs bear debate is heating up again following Tesla Inc.'s fourth-quarter results.

Despite the great quarter, Tesla still posted a $1 billion loss across the year. The company says it is snagging customers from beyond conventional notions of its segment. In 2018, according to Tesla's Shareholder Letter, "Model 3 then went on to become the best-selling passenger vehicle in the USA in terms of revenue in both Q3 and Q4". He said back then that the "true competition is not the small trickle of non-Tesla electric cars being produced, but rather the enormous flood of gasoline cars pouring out of the world's factories every day". Reads the filing: "In 2019, full-year Model 3 volumes will grow substantially over 2018 due to a full year of high production rates at our Fremont facility". "We need to bring the Shanghai factory online, and that's the biggest variable in us getting to 500,000" units for the Model 3, Musk said. "Our auto is very expensive going into China with import duties and the higher cost of labor here". Musk said the company has revamped a system in which spare parts were stored at regional warehouses.

Musk said Tesla is also focused heavily on improving service operations in North America after reports of poor customer service and fix delays.

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