Tesla Model 3 Production Hits 90,000: Pace Currently Below 4,000/Week

Deep Blue Metallic Tesla Model 3 Gets Aftermarket ADV.1 Wheels

SEP 11 2018 BY MARK KANE 83

Tesla is on track to produce the 100,000th Model 3 by the end of this month.

According to Bloomberg’s Tesla Model 3 Tracker (yes, we know it’s not always 100% accurate, but it’s close), cumulative production of the Tesla Model 3 stands now at 90,198 (the numbers are estimated).

While the overall pile of Model 3 is growing, the pace is a little disappointing because Bloomberg’s tool shows just 3,486 units a week in the past seven days. The peak was above 5,000 at the end of June, while the target for the end of August was 6,000.

The highest registered VIN by Tesla was 112,315 (as of September 8).

With almost three weeks to the end of the quarter, Tesla still has a strong chance of reaching the milestone of the 100,000th Model 3 produced, and the majority of those cars will be from the current quarter.

Production and deliveries of the Model 3 in previous quarters thus far:

  • 2017’Q3 – 260 produced, and 222 delivered
  • 2017’Q4 – 2,425 produced and 1,542 delivered
  • 2018’Q1 – 9,766 produced and 8,182 delivered
  • 2018’Q2 – 28,578 produced and 18,440 delivered
  • 2018’Q3 – already >49,169 produced

Tesla Model 3 Tracker (Source: Bloomberg)


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2. Tesla Model 3
Range: 310 miles; 136/123 mpg-e. Still maintaining a long waiting list as production ramps up slowly, the new compact Tesla Model 3 sedan is a smaller and cheaper, but no less stylish, alternative, to the fledgling automaker’s popular Model S. This estimate is for a Model 3 with the “optional” (at $9,000) long-range battery, which is as of this writing still the only configuration available. The standard battery, which is expected to become available later in 2018, is estimated to run for 220 miles on a charge. Tesla Model 3 charge port (U.S.) Tesla Model 3 front seats Tesla Model 3 at Atascadero, CA Supercharging station (via Mark F!) Tesla Model 3 Tesla Model 3 The Tesla Model 3 is not hiding anymore! Tesla Model 3 (Image Credit: Tom Moloughney/InsideEVs) Tesla Model 3 Inside the Tesla Model 3 Tesla Model 3 rear seats Tesla Model 3 Road Trip arrives in Tallahassee Tesla Model 3 charges in Tallahassee, trunk open.


Tesla Model 3 Performance - Dual Motor Badge
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Source: Tesla Model 3 Tracker

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83 Comments on "Tesla Model 3 Production Hits 90,000: Pace Currently Below 4,000/Week"

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Labor Day Holiday week was only a partial week, because it is a holiday. Just like 4th of July was only a partial week, because it was also a holiday.

Just to get the shocking news out of the way now, Thanksgiving week and Christmas/New Years numbers will also be lower production numbers. Because Holiday.

Amazing! Next you’ll be giving us the shocking news that this is entirely predictable because it happens every year. 😉


But nobody is ready for Easter.

Good point.

Yeah check the number it’s simply not true. For the first week of July you have a jump in production. Same for example for end of the year 2017. So ?

One day of production lost each month due to a stat holiday skewed the production average from 5000 units a week to 4000? Care to provide the backup math?

2 stat holidays is not going to bring the average down from 5k to 4k

I took delivery on Sept. 1, 2018 of Tesla Model 3 Performance VIN # 106XXX, and have been driving it now for almost 2 weeks.


If I had a cracker, it would be yours.

Crackerless once again.

So have they already exceeded 100K?

No, VINs are assigned in advance, and not consecutively. They are only used as on orientation in estimating actual production.

Congratulations and my RWD VIN is 59xxx and supposedly in 7 more sleeps I get it. So, I don’t know how much we can infer from VIN numbers.

I see you have that neurosis of waiting for your Tesla. Enjoy it!

Hopefully the slowdown is a result of pausing to fix bottlenecks. But maybe they needed to give workers a break after the big push to 5000 per week. Hopefully they can spin it back up with more efficient use of labour, like they did with the S and X.

Gene Munster calls Musk a ‘jerk, bully, and liar’. https://www.cnbc.com/2018/09/10/gene-munster-tesla-must-overhaul-board-right-now.html

Its pretty much over for Tesla. Once their quickly shrinking reservation list has been satisfied, there will be no need to produce more than 4000 model 3s per week. And if they cant make a profit selling a $60,000 model 3, then a $35,000 model 3 is out of the question. Elon chose the wrong battery technology that ensured that his cars would stay a niche. Not to mention the ipad interface is a terrible idea. Definately not a ‘car for the masses’ like it was supposed to be.

I love the sarcasm in your post.

If you seriously believe they won’t profit this half you are in for a nasty surprise.

For those bullies, jerks, and liars who flunked grade-school math:
420,000 reservations minus 100,000 orders filled = well over 300,000 reservations remaining to fill worldwide.
=> it’ll still be a very long time before the worldwide reservation list is exhausted.

And that’s not counting new orders by word of mouth, worldwide.
And that’s not counting the advertising levers, worldwide, Tesla has not yet pulled.

This assumes all reservations actually convert to sales. Sounds like they are havig trouble with getting reservation holders to pull the trigger and are either waiting for the base model or?

In any case sales to date suggest worldwide demand for the premium model will keep them busy.

They still can’t meet demand in the US except for possibly on RWD model (cheapest).

Also, new reservations are no longer being taken, so obviously the reservation list will shrink. You are only able to order the car now. I imagine there are holdouts for the $35,000 model, and that is coming once demand has saturated for current models based on production at the time. Likely within half a year.

Do you really believe that? These are ad hominem fallacy attacks. For example, Steve Jobs was a big jerk but did a few things right and built Apple from nothing. Same with Musk. Other automakers envy their cars and and deep reservation list. If you still believe this Munster, then take every dollar you have and short away,

It’s not actually a fallacy: he is not suggesting that Musk’s supposedly flawed character invalidates some argument of his. (Rather, he claims that his character harms the company.)

His attack piece contains other fallacies, though: such as suggesting that the voting structure was responsible for failure of the motion to remove Musk at the shareholders meeting — while in truth the motion simply had so little support among shareholders, that it had no chance whatsoever of succeeding, regardless of any other factors.

Elon isn’t a jerk. He’s terribly direct. And indiscreet at times.

I don’t think holidays explain everything.
Tesla has not increased significantly cars being build during Q3 when compared with the end of Q2.
Giving how fast people are getting the cars after ordering, I wouldn’t be surprised if saturation for the USA is being reached. They are far from the 6000 cars/week, I think they didn’t even tried hard.
Also maybe Tesla is trying to pull a profit, building cars that would be delivered only during Q4 would represent costs without income, slowing down production will be positive. With the cars built during Q2 and sold in Q3 they’ll might show a very positive result… If that’s the case they will sacrifice Q4 a bit though.
Stock will reach $400.

Obviously this is my theory, don’t write it in stone or use all your money in Tesla stocks :).

I don’t agree with market saturation yet, but I do agree they don’t want excess inventory sitting at the end of the quarter. This is a great point, especially if it continues through this month. They are also likely concentrating on getting high margin S/X delivered as well.

I also doubt about market saturation, at least until the end of the year while many will try to get the full tax credit.
But still, why didn’t Tesla increase the output to 6k, why the “delivery fairs”, why reading from forums people are getting the car in weeks and not months? – that is not what a reservation list of half million would imply.

Half of the model 3 are sold in California, and model 3 is becoming one of the best selling cars in the entire US. How many more Teslas can California take?

Part of my doubts could be explained with delivery problems… maybe.

Well, first, most people don’t even know about the Model 3. Just wait until a family member or neighbour gets one, then see what the demand is like. Second, many are waiting for the SR — but I suspect the average price, even then, will be >$44k because most will want one or more of: PUP, AWD, EAP, 19″ wheels, or FSD.
Tesla has the enviable problem of too much demand and growing pains.

Exactly – there are many 10s of thousands of people in the US, with and without reservations, waiting for the standard-range models. Tesla opened up orders for the long-range models because there were no more reservations for the long-range models, and because they want to show profit sooner rather than later, so the premium versions are priority.

Between the demand for the long-range models, the profit-mongering, and the tax credit sunset, I do not expect any standard-range models to be sold this calendar year.

Waiting for the SR version of model 3 in the US is losing at least $3750, probably another $1875. It just doesn’t make sense. In 2019, buying the base model 3 will sound like a terrible deal. Even if by then is still a great car for the price, just imagine how stupid people would feel buying one because they’ve waited.
Base model 3 is good for 2020… maybe.

There should be solid demand for the SR Model 3. It will be priced competitively without tax credit, so if you get $3750 or $1875 back, that’s free money.

Exactly, all the Tesla’s will continue to sell well without the tax credits.

They didn’t increase output to 6k yet because they don’t have the factory capacity to do so yet, IINM.

The coming improvements to the battery supply will help clear up one bottleneck, but the paint shop is still a problem for passing or even sustaining 5k/week IIRC.

“…building cars that would be delivered only during Q4 would represent costs without income,”

That’s not how it works. The way to improve Q3 profits is to build as many Model 3s as possible in Q3. Even if you can’t deliver the extra ones until Q4.

Mmmm, but how do you explain they’re not reaching 6k cars/week?
What’s your theory behind that?

Elon cannot build cars fast enough..

With next to no competition, what’s the hurry. It’s better to build the cars right by taking more time than rushing to reach some artificial production number. Just keep making and delivering them and work the system.
Enough demand for years of production, though the same cannot be said of ice sedan models, which are falling by the wayside in droves.

The hurry is that Moody’s will downgrade Tesla’s bonds if they don’t hit specific production milestones.

so moody’s downgrades bonds…..then what happens

Bondholders hedge their bets by shorting the stock, and Tesla has a very hard time with their next capital raise.

Tesla has never gotten any of their bonds rated.

Do you understand how bonds normally get rated? Having a bond get rated is a process where a company offering a bond hires (pays) a rating company like Moody’s to rate their offering. Then Moody’s would meet with the company and get access to information that companies wouldn’t otherwise make public, and make their rating based on that info.

Companies do this so that they can use the bond rating in their promotional materials so they can sell the bonds. Many bond funds will only purchase rated bonds.

Tesla refused to do any of that, and gave the entire bond ratings industry the middle finger. So if you see a bond rating, you have to understand it is an UNSOLICITED rating, without the benefit of any of the normal inside access to the company. It is substantially less meaningful than a solicited rating because they are relying entirely on public information and have no real insight.

Wow – I had no idea – thanks!

The might want to start working on their infrastructure to ship many of them to Europe. Start with the highly optioned-out versions.

I suppose that is there plan, as production goes above 5000/week regularly start producing the Standard model and distributing that in the US while at the same time starting to ship left hand drive premium units to Europe, etc. However, I suspect they will keep pushing Long Range Premium models in the US until demand has been saturated for those (quickest deliveries and will look best for their numbers).

Agree. There is still large numbers of people that do not even know they want a LR, SR demand will be high, and EU/China beckons.

I didn’t know I wanted the Model 3 LR RWD until I saw the efficiency figures for it, the charging times at SC, and the fact I can make a long distance trip near as fast as gas… Also, SC network has recently become large enough it would work for all my trips.

It’s not just infrastructure that is holding up shipments to western Europe. It’s also homologation. Musk estimated Europe/Asia LHD would be ready first half next year and RHD the 2nd half. But there are some significant regulatory items to resolve first.




I think the demand is currently shifted to AWD and Performance and RWD wait times will soon be gone. This tells me there is pent up demand for the Standard battery. At a certain point, they’ll have to build the Standard Battery and soon after start selling them in Europe and Asia if they want to ramp up to 10K a week.

I don’t think they can build as many AWD as they have production line capacity, which is why they are raising prices for AWD and putting together promotional events to push RWD. Hopefully just a supply line shortfall that can be rectified in a month or two.

They are not going to sell the standard battery in the US for $35k anytime soon.
In Europe maybe Tesla can disguise a price increase of the base model within the taxes of some countries.

I am hoping for SR in 19Q1, but might get pushed back a bit.

That is my assumption, as well.

RWD wait times are already gone. The web site says “less than 4 weeks”, basically how long it takes them to get it to your local store.

There are short wait times for RWD LR with PUP, without a lease, without a test drive, delivered to the US.

Everyone who wants a lease, wants a non-PUP version, wants an official Tesla test drive (not pay Turo for a test drive) before they put down a non-refundable deposit, or who lives outside the US are still waiting in line. Each time one of these things change, the waits will go right back up.

FYI — 99% of the cars in the world are sold without wait times. In fact standard of the industry is that after manufacturing, storage in manufacturer’s wholesale lots, transport time, etc, that cars spend an average of 60 days on the DEALER’s lot before being sold. Short wait times after putting in an order does not equal a lack of demand. Current sales actually are the equivalent of 0 days on the lot vs. the traditional ICE dealership model of stocking cars before selling them. 0 days on lot would be considered epic levels of demand anywhere else in the automotive industry.

SeekingAlpha has an article that mentions that there is a Silicon Carbide shortage used in the inverter could be the issue. Seems like it could be a reasonable cause of diminished output.

SA generally also thinks that they will go bankrupt any second now.

As if S.A. is a reliable source

SA really isn’t a source. They are a platform where people can post their opinions. My experience is most of the articles there are selectively biased leaving out some crucial bit of information.

No shortage for SiC for semiconductors, that was a shortage of SiC for other purposes. Tesla will have secured their custom-SiC MOSFET supply.

The SiC shortage theory was first floated on Twitter 8-10 days ago. It’s pretty dubious, IMHO.

I work in the PV inverter market and We have had serious power and film product supply issues. We are building inverters on spot supply at 3 – 5 times the normal cost. The supply issues are real. Paying that much for basic components really killed our expected margins. In fact we had to raise prices to cover it on our hybrid PV storage inverters.

I highly doubt Tesla is buying in the spot market. They have stated publicly before that they have contracts for raw materials, and that they have locked in those contracts well in advance.

What your company is suffering is likely the result of Tesla locking large amounts of SiC OUT of the spot market, thus shrinking the spot market. People without contracts are now competing in a smaller pool of resources. This doesn’t impact Tesla’s contractual delivery prices, it is companies like yours that are impacted.

The Bloomberg tracker isn’t designed to measure week to week, but to measure cumulative production. Take the average cars per day since previous known hard fact, multiply by 7. I get 4714. May be a little optimistic but generally OK.

Crazy Tesla conspiracy theory: Maybe with the production bottlenecks largely solved and Model 3 cars selling like hot-cakes, Elon just pulled a huge troll by going on Joe Rogan & taking a hit off a joint (totally legal by California law). That may have driven the stock price down but was not him saying anything about the company so the SEC can’t go after him about it. Then he & whoever can buy cheap shares…..and then at the next quarterly release with HUGE revenue increase (& hopefully a profit), the stock soars.

Again…just a silly conspiracy theory…I don’t believe it. But….?

It is a buying opportunity.

The big question is profits. They’ve clearly got big revenue pouring in…but are they making money or losing money on the cars? And will sales remain strong if they can’t sell cheaper models? If they do sell cheaper models, will they still have profits?

Best to look at cash flow too because profits are easy to manipulate.

They lost money on Model 3 in Q1, near broke even in Q2 when production was about 18,000 units. Q3 with around 55,000 units produced they will have positive margins, no question. Not producing the cars was causing the cash burn earlier this year. Now they are in stable production.

Crazy? or just crazy enough to be true? Inquiring minds want to know!

The joint still violates his drug-free workplace (read the details) and will be the devil to deal with in his government security clearance. I betcha he gets a pass. Like Bill Clinton.

Not this fud again. It wasn’t on the workplace, it was at 10PM in Rogan’s studio. Tesla has no policies banning any lawful activities outside of the workplace.

Reuters did what Fox didn’t do, and actually fact checked with the Air Force on whether they were investigating Musk’s security clearance. U.S. Air Force spokesperson Captain Hope Cronin debunked the Fox News story, and stated that the Air Force was not investigating, and that the Fox story was “inaccurate”.

They probably need to slow down as they have the 9k not delivered at end of June add the 49k produced =58k against sales for july-august of ~33k USA and ~ 4k canada for 37k

thats about 21000!

I wouldn’t be surprised for sales much greater than 20,000. Although I put a wide range on it, meaning I expect something like 20,000 minimum, but it wouldn’t surprise me if they sell 23,000 or more.

Maybe they need to hold more on the spot sale events near the factory to relieve some of this delivery pressure. It won’t help much but it’s something. Ditch the delivery fee and some will even drive there to pick them up.

That’s a good idea. I bet you could get a lot of people to show up at the Fremont factory parking lot for delivery if you waive the delivery fee.

Delivery from factory wouldn’t work: they don’t have enough parking space there. All the cars they produce basically have to be moved off site as quickly as possible. That’s why they have all these lots elsewhere, that the crazy stalkers are going nuts over…

I bet people would line up at the factory exit and arm wrestle for each car as they come off the line if they could. Mud wrestle if it was raining. *grin*

Can’t ditch the fee, it is a costing average for all their delivery logistics across the globe for a particular vehicle.

Like Vexar said, they can’t drop the delivery and licensing fee. Car companies are mandated by law to list these costs separately from the price of the car. The delivery fee is required by law to be based on the actual cost for delivery.

The law allows car makers to use two different methods of calculating delivery fees:
1) Track actual costs for delivery to each location and charge the cost of delivery for each location separately.
2) Keep track of total delivery costs for all cars to all locations, and divide them evenly across all cars, even if they are delivered directly from the factory. Tesla (and most car makers) use this option.

Keep in mind that the Tesla Delivery and License charge is actually the combination of two separate charges you would normally pay on buying a new car from a dealership. It it both the Delivery charge that shows up as a charge from the factory, and the License/Handling/prep/extra profit fee that each dealership charges based on their own policies and each state’s laws. This can vary wildly from $80-$900 in CA.

Thanks for clarifying this; it always seemed odd to me.

Any idea *why* the law mandates this?…

5 millions tesla/year in 2028

On Saturday the 100,000 mark was cracked!