Investors raise bets against Tesla shares

Elon Musk Goes On Twitter Tirade Over Article Noting Model 3 Dumpster Fire

Overall for the quarter, Tesla delivered 29,980 cars.

Tesla produced 9,766 Model 3 electric cars in Q1 2018, the automaker confirmed today, gaining a surge in the final days of the quarter though still missing its self-imposed targets.

"Maybe Elon Musk switched staff from Model S and X to Model 3 to get better production numbers for Model 3", NORD/LB analyst Frank Schwope said.

Despite all the production hell and cash flow concerns in the first quarter, Tesla has announced plans to build a new truck and a roadster sports vehicle, and to build a factory in China. The company performed a voluntary recall of the Model S over "excessive corrosion in the power steering bolts, though only in very cold climates", according to an email customers received in March.

Indeed, Tesla's stock had jumped more than 5% to about $267 in early afternoon trading.

Musk had vowed he would be making 2,500 cars a week by the end of the first quarter - a target that was already scaled back from a prior forecast of 5,000 a week by the end of 2017. The Model 3 is expected to account for the bulk of that production, but Tesla has also experienced issues in ramping up production of the mass-market electric auto.

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But on Tuesday the California-based firm said it had made more than 2,000 Model 3 vehicles in the past seven days - still some way below Tesla's original target of 5,000, and short of the 2,500 per week it had since scheduled for this March, but a healthier figure than many analysts had suspected.

The electric vehicle maker failed to make as many of its more affordable Model 3 electric cars during the first quarter as it had promised just two months ago.

The company's Model X SUV and Model S sedan lines are working well too, producing 24,728 vehicles collectively, for a total of 34,494 cars coming out of the company's factory.

Tesla's release stressed the overall satisfaction of Model 3 buyers, likely in an effort to counter widespread commentary on build-quality problems and delivery flaws observed by Model 3 buyers over the first several months.

Tesla noted that its delivery figures are "slightly conservative", and that it only considers a vehicle to be delivered once the auto is transferred to a customer and all paperwork is complete. The Elon Musk-led company also stated that it would not require an equity or debt raise this year, apart from standard credit lines.

Additionally, the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board said on Sunday it was "unhappy" that Tesla made public investigative information regarding the crash of one of its self-driving cars last month, which killed the driver.

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Tesla is now making only 975 Model 3s a week - well short of the 2,500-unit rate target by the end of this quarter.

After assessing Tesla's Q1 production numbers as well as the company's cash burn, Bloomberg's Liam Denning wondered if the shareholders' optimism was justified.

As of Monday, April 2, Tesla shares were at $254, which was down 4.4 percent.

"This is the fastest growth of any automotive company in the modern era", Tesla said. What took our team five years for S/X, took only nine months for Model 3. Though it's worth mentioning that it only produced 2,020 Model 3 vehicles last week.

About the same time, the CEO warned that he expected to face "production hell" in the launch of the Model 3, though the troubles proved to be even worse than anticipated. Right now, tho, better to divide & conquer, so I'm back to sleeping at factory.

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