Tesla says it built 25,336 vehicles — 260 of them Model 3 sedans — in the third quarter of 2017. It delivered a total of 26,150 vehicles, broken down as follows:
- 14,065 Model S sedans
- 11,865 Model X SUVs
- 220 Model 3 midsize sedans
The company reports there were 4,820 Model S and Model X vehicles in transit at the end of the quarter (and 40 Model3’s, apparently). Tesla does not count a vehicle as delivered until all the paperwork has been completed, the car is fully paid for, and in the possession of the original owner. Those vehicles will be counted in the fourth quarter.
Q3 was Tesla’s best quarter for its large cars and represents a 4.5 percent increase over the same quarter last year and a 17.7 percent increase over the second quarter of this year. The company announced it expects the number of Model S and Model X vehicles delivered in the second half of 2017 to top the 47,077 delivered in the first quarter by several thousand units, bringing total deliveries for 2017 to over 100,000 vehicles. If that prediction holds true, Tesla deliveries of its large cars will be up nearly a third this year versus last year.
Tesla was at pains to explain that Model 3 deliveries were lower than anticipated, due to production restraints. “Model 3 production was less than anticipated due to production bottlenecks. Although the vast majority of manufacturing subsystems at both our California car plant and our Nevada Gigafactory are able to operate at high rate, a handful have taken longer to activate than expected. It is important to emphasize that there are no fundamental issues with the Model 3 production or supply chain. We understand what needs to be fixed and we are confident of addressing the manufacturing bottleneck issues in the near-term.”
There is no cause for alarm, in other words. If anyone is disappointed that more Model 3’s did not find their way into the hands of buyers, they should bear in mind that every new manufacturing process takes a while to sort out the bugs. The machinery to build the cars wasn’t even installed until this spring. Relax, people. Elon has got this.