Posted on Jan 3, 2021 4:24 PM
Tesla missed his goal by a hair. But given the collapse of the automotive markets linked to the health crisis, this in itself is a good performance. The Californian manufacturer, which counted at the beginning of 2020 on 500,000 deliveries last year, finally ended the year with 499,550 registrations, including 442,500 Model 3 and Model Y. With 180,570 deliveries over the last three months of the year, the firm of ‘Elon Musk sets new quarterly record.
“I am so proud that the Tesla teams have achieved this crucial step! When Tesla started, I thought we had (being optimistic) a 10% chance of survival, ”the whimsical billionaire tweeted on Saturday. Tesla, which struggled to ramp up production of Model 3, its first production vehicle, delivered 103,097 cars in 2017, 245,000 in 2018 and 367,200 in 2019.
So proud of the Tesla team for achieving this major milestone! At the start of Tesla, I thought we had (optimistically) a 10% chance of surviving at all. https://t.co/xCqTL5TGlE
– Elon Musk (@elonmusk) January 2, 2021
The Palo Alto firm has since taken several crucial steps. In particular, at the end of 2019, it started its Chinese plant near Shanghai and launched its new production vehicle, the Model Y. It has even been profitable for five consecutive quarters, certainly thanks to the sale of CO2 credits, but also to the growing profitability of its automotive division.
The company, whose share price experienced an extraordinary rise last year (+ 743%), joined the prestigious S&P 500 stock index on December 21. Its market capitalization now stands at $ 670 billion! What to raise funds at a lower cost: Tesla is not deprived of it, having launched three capital increases during the year, for a total of more than 12 billion dollars.
Increasingly severe competition
The company may have foiled all the predictions of the Cassandras in recent years, skeptics remain numerous. “Tesla hasn’t shown anything revolutionary for 18 months, and volumes remain low, relative to the overall automotive market. Above all, the quality problems which persist show that production rates are still not regular ”, advances Bertrand Rakoto, consultant at Ducker.
Tesla will in any case still have to overcome many obstacles in 2021. The Californian manufacturer has started construction of a factory in Texas, for its Cybertruck pick-up, as well as a new Gigafactory near Berlin, which is to produce its first Model 3 and Model Y by the end of the year.
Above all, Tesla will have to face increasingly severe competition. He will have to face the Western manufacturers whose battery models are starting to land en masse on the roads, but also face newcomers to the electric like Nio, XPeng or Li Auto. How long will Elon Musk’s firm manage to maintain its rank as the world’s number one electric car? The question remains open.