Tesla Motors, Inc. has delivered close to 24,500 vehicles in the third quarter of the fiscal year, the company reports. Out of all the delivered vehicles, 15,800 of which were Tesla Model S vehicles, and 8,700 were Model X, bringing the total Tesla vehicle deliveries up by 70% from Q2.
Tesla considers their delivery count to be "slightly conservative" given the fact that they only consider a vehicle delivered if it gets from assembly to consumer, adding also that they consider a delivery valid if all paperwork is correct.
Additionally, Tesla did not include the 5,500 vehicles headed to customers at the close of the quarter. The company will group that 5,500 with Q4 numbers, instead.
Apart from delivery, production also increased by 37% with 25,185 vehicles assembled in Q3 compared to 18,345 vehicles assembled the previous quarter. Tesla expects Q4 to garner slightly larger numbers than Q3, confident in its forecast despite noting that Q4 is a shorter period for deliveries, along with logistical difficulties during winter.
However, Tesla is careful to point out "forward-looking statements" in its press release, noting that despite their optimistic prediction regarding Q4 deliveries and production, the company is subject to unforeseeable uncertainties and risks.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk previously stated that Q3 2016 would be its best quarter in the company's history, but the press release had no references that pertain to Musk's expectation. In a mass email sent to Tesla employees early in September, Musk noted how important Q3 was for Tesla and its investors.
"The third quarter will be our last chance to show investors that Tesla can be at least slightly positive cash flow and profitable before the Model 3 reaches full production," said Musk.
Tesla's Q3 performance was a needed surge for the company before it heads straight on a very busy trajectory: it intends to build its $5 billion Gigafactory before it begins production of the Model 3 in late 2017.
What accounted for the uptick in production remains undisclosed, but this is certainly good news for Tesla, having delivered fewer vehicles in Q2 than it targeted. For Tesla, Q2 marked its second consecutive attempt to hit its expected mark, suffering a profit loss along the way. The financial dents put the company under great pressure to keep its investors pleased. It's unclear yet if Tesla will reach its delivery target of 50,000 by the second half of 2016, but it's certainly a step closer to reaching that goal.
Tesla has particularly been robust in its effort to mass-market its lineup of electric vehicles recently. It launched a two-year lease program for Model S and Model X in August, charging $593 monthly for those who avail, with a considerably steep down payment. Tesla also re-released the Model S 60, its most affordable electric vehicle that comes with a bigger battery for $66,000, more attuned to a wider consumer radar compared to the more expensive Tesla EV lineups.
The $35,000 Model 3 is set to debut next year, coming in at a fraction of the price of its predecessors, which speaks volumes for Tesla, opening up an affordable option for potential EV adopters.
Photo: Sam Felder | Flickr