Sci-tech

Tesla Just Announced The Latest Model 3 Production Delay

Tesla Just Announced The Latest Model 3 Production Delay

But it was already hard to see how Tesla can sell the Model 3 at its $35,000 starting price and pull in 25 percent gross margins, which are typical of higher-end luxury cars, Brinkman said.

Tesla shares closed lower for a second consecutive trading session on Thursday.

The Model 3 is critical to Tesla's long-term success, as it is the most affordable of its cars to date and is the only one capable of transforming the niche automaker to a mass producer amid a sea of rivals entering the nascent electric vehicle market.

Tesla says that it has spent the last three months addressing the "production bottlenecks" on the Model 3 line, and production will now rise sharply.

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"We believe a fundraise will be necessary for Tesla in 2018", wrote Brian Johnson, an analyst at Barclays Plc, in a report to clients Thursday.

However, the delays intensify the rate at which Tesla is burning cash-US$1.1 billion in the third quarter and about the same estimated for the last quarter of 2017-and worrying investors, who have yet to see a profit from Tesla. The carmaker has been blowing through more than $1 billion a quarter as it's had trouble scaling up output despite spending heavily on robots, assembly lines and tooling for the sedan that is Musk's cheapest yet, starting at $35,000. The Model 3 must be right in terms of quality. So was Jonas rending garments when Tesla announced that instead of making 5,000 Model 3s every week, the company made 1,550 apparently bespoke Model 3s in three months?

The electric-car maker said it delivered 1,550 Model 3 sedans in the fourth quarter, a bit more than half of the 2,917 that Wall Street analysts were expecting.

Beyond the Model 3, Tesla's overall auto deliveries were on target for the fourth quarter and the year as a whole.

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Buyers of the latest bonds have since taken a hit, and it would likely cost Tesla more to borrow in that market again.

The Model 3 is expected to arrive in the United Kingdom in 2019.

Tesla shares, despite paring some gains from a high of $385 in September, still trade at 46 percent above their price a year ago.

In a statement Wednesday, Tesla thanked customers "who continue to stick by us while patiently waiting for their cars". During the last week of December, the company said, it made 793 Model 3s. But Tesla has skipped many incremental steps used by established carmakers when launching new products. Yet in the same period, 63,000 were cancelled, Elon Musk said during Tesla's quarterly conference call in July-a figure he saw as insignificant as it happened over 12 months.

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