Tesla Faces Criminal Probe Over Model 3 Production Claims

Posted October 28, 2018

He added: "While Tesla is a very innovative and disruptive company with strong growth ahead via disrupting large addressable markets, it is also a classic story stock that is hard to value given that the investment decision is often qualitative rather than quantitative".

The electric carmaker said in a statement Friday that it complied with a "voluntary request for documents" from the Department of Justice about Tesla's "public guidance" about Model 3 production.

The electric auto maker also said its Q3 revenues climbed 70.5% to hit $6.82 billion, up from $4 billion in the second quarter and more than double the $2.98 billion reported in the same period a year earlier.

During the Q3 presentation, CEO Elon Musk also added that the Model Y would be ready for production in 2020. It didn't hit the 5,000-a-week target until June 2018. With the S&P 500 falling 3.1% and the Nasdaq tumbling nearly 4.5%, some may have assumed Tesla (TSLA) struggled as well. Tesla had promised to produce 5,000 Model 3s every week by the end of a year ago, but only managed to make 2,700 units. What that means for Tesla isn't clear just yet, as the focus right now is on production, China and profitability. But Tesla is starting to churn the Model 3 out in impressive quantities now, and although it's only really available in the U.S. and Canada at the moment that will change next year.

"When we started the Model 3 production ramp, we were transparent about how hard it would be, openly explaining that we would only be able to go as fast as our least lucky or least successful supplier and that we were entering 'production hell", Tesla said.

Model 3 is a key part of Tesla's plan to expand from a niche player in the segment of luxury to the automaker with a wider range of consumers.

In other Tesla news, Director Kimbal Musk sold 1,875 shares of the firm's stock in a transaction dated Monday, October 1st.

CEO accused of misleading investors about the privatization of the company.

Labor hours per Model 3 decreased by more than 30% quarter over quarter, falling for the first time below the Model S and X levels.

The Model 3 sedan was a huge driver for the quarter.

Tesla has denied the claims in the lawsuit, saying it disclosed production bottlenecks once they were identified, and citing Musk's public statements that the company was undergoing a period of "production hell" in 2017.

Tesla reported a Model 3 gross margin of 20 per cent, which significantly exceeded Mr Baird's expectations.

Tesla executives expect to begin delivering Model 3 cars in Europe in the first quarter of next year, and in China by the second quarter. In the presentation, Musk mentioned that Tesla would definitely be offering the service in future, which will likely be competing with Lyft and Uber. One of the reasons it will have only one visual display is to make manufacturing easier and further reduce the amount of wiring used in the vehicle.