Elon Musk hails Tesla reaching goal of 5000 Model 3s a week

Tesla’s Model 3

The 5,000th vehicle rolled off the production line early on Sunday morning, hours after the electric auto maker's chief executive Elon Musk's midnight goal.

The carmaker's short sellers, those who put money on a stock declining in value, lost roughly $2.5 billion on paper in the month of June, according to data from Ihor Dusaniwsky, managing director of predictive analytics at financial technology firm, S3 Partners.

To date, Tesla has sent out 28,386 copies of the Model 3 to customers, but it still has 420,000 net reservations in the queue.

Explaining the cause behind a string of delays, Musk earlier this year took the blame and said that the company, at his insistence, relied too heavily upon automation.

Tesla hit a key milestone in the second quarter, managing to hit a 5,000-per-week production target for its important Model 3 electric vehicle.

"Now that Tesla has achieved the 5,000 mark [for the Model 3], it needs to do so on a steady, routine basis and with excellent quality", Michelle Krebs, an analyst with car-shopping website Autotrader, was quoted by The Los Angeles Times as saying.

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One nugget of the story getting attention is that Tesla's engineers did away with 300 of about 5,000 welds in the Model 3 underbody after concluding they were unnecessary. "It was not easy, but it was definitely worth it", Tesla said. As investors started to get restless, Musk kept on making grand promises for future Tesla models and new Model 3 versions, which must have added to the annoyance.

To meet its goal, Tesla had set up a new production line inside a tent on the campus of its Fremont factory.

"The last 12 months were some of the most hard in Tesla's history", the company said in a statement. The Guggenheim Securities analyst also noted stated that Tesla's in-house development of the vehicles' components would prove to be a difference-maker. Tesla stock rose over 4-percent after today's announcement. But it appears that Tesla's recent moves, which included building a new Model 3 assembly line under a giant tent, had paid off.

"We expect that GA3 alone can reach a production rate of 5,000 Model 3s per week soon, but GA4 helped to get us there faster and will also help to exceed that rate", Tesla said in a statement released Monday. Of those, 18,440 were Model 3, 10,930 were Model S, and 11,370 were Model X. Tesla built 49,489 of those cars in the first half of this year. Tesla said cash from Model 3 sales will pay the bills and drive profits.

Despite working overtime, during now-mandatory weekend shifts, workers told Reuters they were pulled from other departments, disrupting production of the Model S and X lines.

In June this year, Musk confirmed "difficult but necessary" layoffs were taking place at Tesla in an attempt to boost profits.

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