Electric car pioneer Tesla has achieved its goal to beat its previous quarterly delivery record, reporting 95,200 cars were delivered by the end of June and sending stock values up by 7 per cent.
Weeks of motivation and reassurance from Tesla CEO and founder Elon Musk that the EV maker could deliver a record quarter for deliveries (and their sales volume) have been jubilantly proven true, resulting in the spike after close of business on Tuesday (US time).
Whether this will translate to a profitable quarter is yet to be seen – Tesla has not yet commented on financials. The first quarter of 2019 saw the company report a loss that was attributed to logistical “insanity” of expanding its best-selling Model 3 into European and Chinese markets by the entrepreneur.
Just days before the end of Q2, 2019, Musk urged staff onwards to achieve the record quarter saying the goal was possible if Tesla went “all out”.
With just over 87,000 vehicles produced in the second quarter – 72,531 of which were Model 3s – it appears the EV maker was able to play catch-up on its global delivery schedule, turning around the loss of the first quarter of 2019 when it delivered only around 63,000 vehicles.
While Tesla reports that 7,400 vehicles are still currently in transit, the figures still beat analyst predictions of 91,000, according to data from FactSet.
Up by 4,500 units from its previous record of 90,200 deliveries in the last quarter of 2018, the record is a solid indicator to shareholders that the company continues to hold its position as a leader in the transition to electric vehicles.
Tesla was careful to impress that delivery numbers do not necessarily equate to profits, with cash flow and income due to be disclosed at an earnings call that will most likely be set for late July.
Until then, the company will continue with the task of continue to fill orders.
With the best-selling – and more affordable – Model 3 electric sedan now available in both left-hand and right-hand drive markets around the world, including Australia, Tesla says it has taken more orders during the second quarter than it was able to make cars.
This has left the EV maker with a backlog going into the third quarter to 2019 – a challenging but encouraging problem to have.
Meanwhile, the company is apparently cementing its ability to keep up with demand by working towards securing ample battery supply.
Currently, Tesla sources the majority of its battery cells through a partnership with Panasonic.
In May Tesla finally completed a long-awaited deal with battery company Maxwell that could see the company take advantage of advanced “dry electrode” tech to increase the energy density of its batteries.
On Wednesday last week, CNBC reported that the carmaker has a “secret” lab where it is developing its own battery cells to reduce its dependency on Panasonic, according to past and current employees.
If successful, the EV maker may be able to reduce the cost of batteries – which account for a large percentage of the cost of electric cars – thereby enabling it to further reduce the prices of its range of electric vehicles.
Bridie Schmidt is lead reporter for The Driven, sister site of Renew Economy. She specialises in writing about new technology and has been writing about electric vehicles for two years. She has a keen interest in the role that zero emissions transport has to play in sustainability and is co-organiser of the Northern Rivers Electric Vehicle Forum.