Production of the Tesla Model S luxury sedan is above the 400 unit-per-week mark, CEO Elon Musk says.
As demand for the car grows with orders from China and Europe, sales are expected to increase. Musk predicts that Tesla will produce 21,000 units this year — a figure that stands in stark contrast to last year when the maker struggled to build 5,000. Current production rates represent the target set out by Tesla to meet its production goals for 2013, and the rate will likely keep climbing.
In fact, Musk expects weekly production to hit 800 units in late 2014. Passing the 400 mark is less of a surprise and more an affirmation that the enigmatic CEO’s annual goals are within reach. On May 10, the company released its quarterly earnings report, which included production details.
“By the end of 2012, we had successfully increased production volume to over 400 vehicles per week and we have continued to consistently produce at or above this rate during the first quarter of 2013,” the company said in its first quarterly earnings report of 2013.
“We expect that this production level will allow us to achieve our goal of 21,000 Model S deliveries worldwide in 2013 and thereby significantly increase automotive sales, as compared to 2012.”
Model S production will need to climb much farther if Tesla hopes to keep up with demand. Missing its mark last year lead to a widened loss after hiring temporary workers to fill production gaps. Those risks and numbers will only grow from here.
Assuming Tesla’s management plans adequately in advance, that shouldn’t be an issue. Production takes place in the same factory General Motors and Toyota once occupied. In those days, the plant spat out a solid 500,000 per year.
While there’s no telling how long it will take for Tesla to reach such production heights, Musk is optimistic.
“We are going to have every kind of car you could possibly imagine,” he told Bloomberg. Up next, the brand is expected to begin delivering the Model X crossover — based on the same platform as the Model S — in late 2014. A less costly sedan model will follow.
Musk wouldn’t tell Bloomberg much more, saying further production details will wait until the company releases its second quarter results. A firm date for that release isn’t set, but a Tesla spokesperson told AutoGuide that there will be an announcement and that the release date will be posted one week in advance. Last year, the company released second quarter results on July 25.
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