Tesla Motors Inc. delivered a record 24,500 vehicles in the third quarter. This was an increase of just over 70% from last quarter’s deliveries of 14,402.
In addition to Q3 deliveries, about 5,500 vehicles were in transit to customers at the end of the quarter. These will not be counted as deliveries until Q4.
Production rose to 25,185 vehicles in Q3. This was an increase of 37% from Q2 production of 18,345.
Tesla expect Q4 deliveries and production to be at or slightly above Q3, despite Q4 being a shorter quarter and the challenge of delivering vehicles in winter weather over holidays. It reiterated that it expected to deliver 50,000 vehicles in the second half.
Tesla introduced a 60-kWh Model S in June that starts at $66,000 before federal or state incentives and 60-kWh Model X in July. In August, the automaker added a 100-kWh battery option with additional range. The Palo Alto-based automaker also announced a two-year lease on orders placed by Sept. 12.
The Q3 deliveries figure is a preliminary number that may change slightly in November when the company reports earnings for the period. Tesla counts a vehicle as delivered if it’s transferred to the buyer and all paperwork is correct. The automaker releases global sales figures quarterly, instead of the monthly country-by-country results typically announced by other automakers.
Tesla vehicle deliveries represent only one measure of the company’s financial performance and should not be relied on as an indicator of quarterly financial results, which depend on a variety of factors, including the cost of sales, foreign exchange movements and mix of directly leased vehicles.