Shares of Tesla (TSLA) fell after hours Wednesday as the company missed on earnings and pushed out some of CEO Elon Musk’s ambitious production targets.
For the quarter, Tesla posted an adjusted earnings loss of $2.92 per share, substantially worse than the shortfall of $2.31 that analysts surveyed by FactSet expected. Revenue of $2.98 billion exceeded the consensus call of $2.95 billion.
Tesla shares dropped 5% to $304.75 after the market close on Wednesday. The stock, which declined by 3% during the regular session, is still up about 43% this year.
The company said it burned through more than $1 billion in cash during the quarter.
Musk, who said he had “a bit of a cold,” participated in the call from Tesla’s Gigafactory in Nevada where he is working to fix production hangups in batteries and other issues that have pushed Model 3 production behind schedule.
On a positive note, Musk told investors that Tesla has delivered 250,000 cars since its founding — 100 times more than the 2,500 it had shipped five years ago. The Tesla boss posed a question to his skeptics. “Which one of you predicted that Tesla would go from 2,500 units delivered to 250,000?” he asked. “I suspect the answer is zero.”
Musk had already warned investors in early October that Model 3 production would come in well below expectations. The company churned out just 222 Model 3s in the third quarter, in line with Tesla’s October guidance but well below the 1,500 the company had previously forecast.
Battery packs are the big hangup, Musk said, after a subcontractor “really dropped the ball.”
The company pushed back production targets and now expects to reach production of 5,000 Model 3 vehicles per week by late in the first quarter of 2018. Previously Musk said Tesla would cross the benchmark in the fourth quarter of 2017. By the end of the year, Tesla expects to produce a “few thousand” units per week. The company said it will provide an update on fourth-quarter output in early January.
Tesla Stock Drops Amid Mixed Quarterly Results, Model 3 Bottlenecks – TheStreet.com