Tesla Inc reported first-quarter profits that more than doubled, and while stating the upcoming Model 3 was on schedule for July, it minimized the mass-market automobile to provide a sales pitch for its more costly Model S.
CEO Elon Musk’s bold actions to cars, space exploration and clean energy has actually sustained financier interest for Tesla. However skeptics are waiting to see if Musk can meet his target of producing 500,000 vehicles annually in 2018, or six times Tesla’s 2016 production.
After the results, shares were down about 2 percent in after-hours trade.
Tesla’s comments highlighted the extra challenge of maintaining demand for its older models.
“We have seen some impact of Model S orders as a function of people being confused” that Model 3 is the upgrade to Model S, Musk stated.
Tesla stated it had $4 billion of cash on hand as it headed into the second quarter and anticipates year-to-date capital expenditure to be slightly over $2 billion by the time it begins Model 3 production – within its previous targeted range of $2 billion to $2.5 billion.
That cushion must provide the company some near-term breathing space from needing to tap Wall Street for money, stated CFRA Research analyst Efraim Levy. Tesla in March raised $1.2 billion.
Record deliveries assisted Tesla improve its earnings to $2.7 billion in the quarter, however a net loss net broadened to $330.3 million from $282.3 million a year previously, mainly driven by its SolarCity acquisition.
Tesla has much bet on the Design 3, which could finally make the the automaker successful.