Tesla says it’s on track to make Model 3 cars

Tesla Model 3
Tesla says its Model 3 electric car is on track to go into initial production in July. (Tesla Photo)

Tesla says it’s “on track” to start producing its mass-market Model 3 electric vehicles in July, and plans to build 5,000 of the cars per week by the end of the year.

The company, which reported financial results for 2016’s fourth quarter and the full year today, also said it’ll pick locations for as many as three more Gigafactories this year. Tesla’s first Gigafactory, in Nevada, is already turning out power cells for the company’s energy storage system, while its second factory is building solar panels in New York.

“We start 2017 well positioned to scale our business significantly,” Tesla said in its typically upbeat quarterly letter to shareholders.

Investors reacted positively, turning Tesla’s price trend from a minus to a plus in after-hours trading.

Quarterly revenue exceeded Thomson Reuters’ expectations, reaching $2.28 billion rather than the predicted $2.19 billion. Tesla’s loss per share amounted to 69 cents, which was more than Thomson Reuters’ forecast of 42 cents but less than Bloomberg News’ advance estimate of $1.14.

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By Alan Boyle

Mastermind of Cosmic Log, contributor to GeekWire and Universe Today, author of "The Case for Pluto: How a Little Planet Made a Big Difference," past president of the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing.

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