Tesla Deliveries Hit Record Quarter But No Thanks to the Model 3

Tesla Inc. has just come off the best-ever quarter in its relatively short history as far as deliveries are concerned. The Palo Alto manufacturer had 26,150 of its vehicles hit the road during the third quarter of 2016, its best figure so far.
Tesla Model 3 1 photo
Photo: Tesla Inc.
The increase over Q2 was a very significant 17.7 percent, but more importantly, it was also 4.4 percent better than the Q3 of 2016, which were also some very good three months for the company. However, the increase did not come from the recently launched Model 3, which continues its slow start with deliveries limited to Tesla employees and insiders.

The main artisan of the new record is probably the Model X electric SUV which had its best quarter so far, beating the previous record set in Q1 by over 300 units. The total number of Model Xs delivered throughout Q3 was 11,865, closing the gap on the Model S sedan which is still on top with 14,065.

The Model 3 contributed with just 220 units, with 260 of them built during this period. That's way short of the 1,000 units target set by the company, with blame falling on "production bottlenecks."

Model 3 production was less than anticipated due to production bottlenecks," reads the press release. "Although the vast majority of manufacturing subsystems at both our California car plant and our Nevada Gigafactory are able to operate at high rate, a handful have taken longer to activate than expected. It is important to emphasize that there are no fundamental issues with the Model 3 production or supply chain. We understand what needs to be fixed and we are confident of addressing the manufacturing bottleneck issues in the near-term.”

The company also said there were roughly 4,820 Model S and X vehicles in transit at the end of Q3 which will be registered in Q4, with the total production for the period that just ended sitting at 25,336.

In just a few months, these numbers in the lower tens of thousands should be a thing of the past. Once the Model 3 production ramps up, Tesla should be setting delivery record after record. With 400,000 reservations for the new electric sedan waiting, it should be a while before Tesla has any demand issues, if that will ever happen again.
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About the author: Vlad Mitrache
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"Boy meets car, boy loves car, boy gets journalism degree and starts job writing and editing at a car magazine" - 5/5. (Vlad Mitrache if he was a movie)
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