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Tesla Posts Record Q3 Deliveries of 241,300 Amid 'Hardcore' Push From Elon Musk

Tesla followed its first billion dollar profit in the second quarter with record third quarter deliveries of 241,300, taking its year-to-date total past 625,000.

Tesla Inc.  (TSLA) - Get Tesla Inc Report unveiled record third quarter deliveries Saturday, defying forecasts that suggested a global shortage in semiconductor supplies would impact the clean-energy carmaker.

Tesla delivered 241300 new cars over the three months ended in October, the company said in a Saturday statement, up 73.2% from last year and nearly 20% higher than the 201,250 reached in the second quarter. Analysts were looking for a total of around 230,000.

The third quarter total was comprised of 323,025 Model 3 and Model Y sedans, Tesla said, and 9,275 of its higher-priced Model S and Model X. 

"We would like to thank our customers for their patience as we work through global supply chain and logistics challenges," Tesla said in a statement.  

Founder and CEO Elon Musk said last month that Tesla is "operating under extreme supply chain limitations regarding certain 'standard' automotive chips", and told investors in July that it could impact production rates over the second half of the year. 

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He added in a weekend email that this will be the company's “most intense delivery week ever," Electrek reported earlier this week, adding that he thanks workers for the “hardcore delivery push.”

Tesla shares closed at $775.22 each Friday, after falling just 0.035% on the session. The move trimmed the stock's year-to-date gain to around 6.25% and values the Palo Alto, California-based group  just under $768 billion.

Last month thge China Passenger Car Association (CPCA) said Tesla sold 44,264 China-made cars in August, with 31,379 of those destined for export to international markets. China-based sales, CPCA said, totaled 12,885, up 49.5% from the previous month, even as overall sales in the world's biggest car market fell 15% from the same period last year.

China is a hugely important market for Tesla, but its facing deeper scrutiny from Beijing over its data and storage policies and broader brand erosion following the virtual June recall of recall of 285,000 cars -- nearly all of the group's China-based deliveries over the past five years -- linked to an autopilot software glitch.

Short interest in Tesla, meanwhile, remains elevated ahead of its third quarter earnings on October 20.

S3 Partners, which calculates the volume of bets against the market's most-active stocks, pegs short interest in Tesla at around $20.45 billion, or 3.4% of the outstanding float.