Published: Thu, January 03, 2019
Money | By Wilma Wheeler

Tesla starts taking Model 3 orders in China

Tesla starts taking Model 3 orders in China

Tesla (TSLA) disappointed investors Wednesday, announcing that it delivered 90,700 vehicles during the fourth quarter - short of Wall Street forecasts despite its efforts to ramp up production. The company produced 61,394 Model 3s, up from a total of 53,239 Model 3s in the third quarter, but showed no improvement on the 5,000 per week rate it finally achieved at the end of the third quarter.

CNBC reports that Elon Musk's Tesla has yet again run into another stumbling block, once again failing to meet its expected fourth quarter delivery estimates. This suggests that many existing reservation holders are still waiting for the cheaper $35,000 vehicle that Tesla has promised but doesn't yet build.

Tesla also revealed that most Model 3 sales were limited to the mid- and higher-price versions of the sedan and that most sales were to new customers.

Tesla's shares sank heavily in morning trading, falling over 9% when markets opened.

Tesla says it delivered over 245,000 electric cars and SUVs last year, almost as many as all previous years combined.

At current delivery rates, Tesla's reductions would cost it more than £550million in 2019, he said.

Tesla had over 3,000 Model 3s left in inventory in the United States as of Sunday, automotive news website Electrek reported on Monday, citing people familiar with the matter.

Ives added that Tesla shares are "hypersensitive to any issue around Model 3" and that it will remain a stock that is "guilty until proven innocent" until it discloses quarterly earnings figures next year.

Tesla's vehicle deliveries fell short of Wall Street analysts' expectations as the Silicon Valley automaker wrestles with the realization that its federal tax credits are quickly running out.

Longer-term we think the price cut is more concerning. The analyst said demand for Tesla vehicles, most notably the Model 3, remained strong leaving 2018 and entering 2019. Shares were last down 7.8% at $306.97.

But it also said it would cut prices of its three models by $2,000 to help customers handle the gradual phase-out of federal electric vehicle tax credits.

The company delivered 8 percent more vehicles during the quarter, a new all-time high, but the numbers were less than expected. However, the company delivered just 63,150 Model 3s in the fourth quarter, missing analyst targets by 1,750 vehicles.

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