Sunday 21 July 2019

Tesla soars as Model 3 spurs record quarter

Elon Musk. Photo: Reuters
Elon Musk. Photo: Reuters

Dana Hull

Tesla has delivered a record quarter of car sales, alleviating the worst fears about demand for the Elon Musk-led company's electric vehicles.

The Model 3 maker handed over 95,200 cars to customers in the three months that ended in June, exceeding the previous best mark set in the last quarter of 2018. Tesla's delivery count exceeded all but one analyst's estimate in a Bloomberg News survey.

Tesla shares initially jumped 7pc on the news. The stock had fallen 33pc over the year through to the end of regular trading on Tuesday, in part due to demand concerns. While the results go a long way towards contradicting Tesla's doubters, it remains to be seen whether this level of demand is sustainable.

In the US, a $3,750 (€3,320) federal tax credit buyers were eligible for was cut by half from July 1, and deliveries tailed off the last time the incentive shrank.

Mr Musk has also said that the company will post a loss for the quarter, then report positive earnings in the second half.

Tesla left out of its statement any mention of its full-year forecast for 360,000 to 400,000 deliveries.

Musk, 48, urged employees to "go all out" in the final days of Tesla's first full quarter in which Model 3s made their way to buyers in Europe and China.

Overseas demand contributed to deliveries of the sedan, jumping to 77,550 units, more than all the vehicles Tesla handed over in the first quarter.

"The big picture is that something is happening around electric vehicles," said Gene Munster, a managing partner of venture capital firm Loup Ventures. "The Model 3 is on fire."


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