Tesla's losses expected to grow on Model 3 delays

Tesla's losses expected to grow on Model 3 delays

That said, Tesla made $3.3 billion in revenue, largely thanks to the Model 3, while future customers spent tens of millions just to join the queues for the Tesla Semi and Roadster models that Musk showed in November.

The company released its Q4 2017 result on Wednesday night in the USA, reporting negative free cash flow of $276.8 million - the lowest in more than a year - and $675 million in losses attributable to shareholders; notching up nearly $2 billion in losses for the whole year.

Falcon Heavy test flight profile
Falcon Heavy test flight profile

Much attention from analysts and the public has been focused on Tesla's Model 3 sedan, the company's entry-level electric vehicle and its bid for the mass market.

Production of the vehicle put Tesla "in a deeper level of hell than we expected", Musk said, adding that his firm was still "a few levels deeper than we'd like to be" and "the pain level is extremely high".

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The Tesla earnings report comes one day after Musk's other company, SpaceX, successfully launched the massive Falcon Heavy rocket. Musk said in July past year that Tesla would probably be making 20,000 Model 3s per month by December 2017.

Tesla delivered 1,542 Model 3 vehicles in the quarter, barely making a dent in the reservation list for the new auto, as it faced production delays. The automaker is struggling to meet production targets for its first mass-market auto, the Model 3 sedan.

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Musk said he was "cautiously optimistic" Tesla would become profitable, though he didn't say when. Tesla expects to deliver about 100,000 of the two models in 2018.

Those showroom displays helped increase pre-orders for the Model 3, Tesla suggested.

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"What we can say with confidence is that we are taking many actions to systematically address bottlenecks and add capacity in places like the battery module line where we have experienced constraints", the company said. In total, the company said it had produced 2,425 Model 3s in the fourth quarter.

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