Tesla says this low rate is due to "production bottlenecks", attributing the issues to delays in activating a number of its manufacturing subsystems in its California vehicle plant and Nevada Gigafactory, which are normally "able to operate at high rate". But Tesla only managed to make 260 example of the all new Model 3, which began production in July. The company understands what needs to be done and that they are confident of addressing the bottleneck of production issues in nearest term. "In our opinion, quality and attractiveness of early production is far more important than the quantity delivered - at least for now".
While deliveries of Tesla's premium vehicles, the Model X and Model S, came in at all-time highs of 25,930 over Q3, year-over-year growth was muted at just 4.5%. It expects to deliver about 100,000 of those models in 2017. Getting the estimated 500,000 deposit-holders in the driver's seat will require building more cars than the company's entire production output since its founding. In a statement to CNBC Monday evening, Tesla blamed production bottlenecks for missing the goal by so much. The remaining 220 were Tesla's recently launched Model 3.
Unlike Tesla's solid Model S and X deliveries during the quarter, Model 3 deliveries were worse than the electric-car maker was aiming for.
Nevertheless, it looks iffy whether Tesla can meet its previously stated goal to produce 5,000 Model 3s a week by the end of 2017, according to analysts at Cowan & Co.
On Wall Street, Tesla bulls were undeterred while skeptics effectively said "Told you so". There have been reports that it may consider relaxing rules that require foreign automotive companies to have a local partner, potentially allowing Tesla to manufacture its vehicles in the country.
Given the number of preorders, Musk must hope that customers waiting on delivery of a Model 3 don't take these appearances to heart. Tesla sold these vehicles in the quarter to employees and investors. It shows a modern looking truck which is quite similar to the teaser image Tesla had released in April.
However, many market analysts have started talking about Tesla losing ground to Chevrolet Bolt EV.