Tesla says Model 3 output on track

January 27, 2018

Tesla Inc. is on track to achieve its production targets for the Model 3, the company said Thursday, squashing a broadcast report of further delays and quality issues for its latest and most-affordable sedan.

Tesla’s problems with battery production at its Gigafactory in Sparks, Nev., are worse than it has acknowledged, CNBC reported Thursday, citing some company employees.

In some cases, Tesla has needed to make batteries by hand and borrow scores of employees from one of its suppliers to help, CNBC reported.

Tesla shares closed down 2.4 percent Thursday following the report but rose 1.6 percent in extended trading after the company said it had no further production setbacks.

At 11 a.m. Eastern time, Tesla shares were trading up $2.84 at $340.48.

“To be absolutely clear, we are on track with the previous projections for achieving increased Model 3 production rates that we provided earlier this month,” a Tesla spokesman said in a emailed statement.

“As has been well documented, until we reach full production, by definition some elements of the production process will be more manual,” the spokesman said.

This month, Tesla delayed a production target for the Model 3 for the second time, disappointing investors even as it claimed “major progress” overcoming manufacturing challenges that have hampered the vehicle’s rollout.

Tesla plans to make about 2,500 Model 3s per week by the end of the first quarter, half the number it had promised earlier. It expects to reach 5,000 vehicles per week by the end of the second quarter.

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