Tesla car sales rise less than expected, fueling concerns

Tesla said on Monday that deliveries in the final three months of the year rose 18% from the previous quarter, disappointing Wall Street analysts and ramping up pressure on the company’s chief executive, Elon Musk, to Focus on building cars instead of overhauling Twitter.

Tesla said it delivered 405,000 electric vehicles from October to December. Wall Street analysts had forecast Tesla would sell about 420,000 vehicles, up from 343,000 in the third quarter.

The company will sell a total of 1.3 million vehicles in 2022, a 40% increase from the previous year. That’s below the 50% annual growth target Tesla has set for itself.

While those gains are impressive by auto industry standards, Tesla has become the world’s most valuable automaker, growing at the blistering pace typically associated with Silicon Valley tech companies.

In recent months, Tesla has appeared vulnerable to competition from established automakers and rising borrowing rates, making its electric vehicles more expensive for those who borrow. Signs that Tesla is ultimately dead have sent Tesla shares down 65% in 2022 and led investors to focus more on traditional metrics like sales and profits than dreams of world domination.

Deliveries in the fourth quarter were below analysts’ expectations, who had already lowered their forecasts, and were below what Tesla executives had suggested months ago. Tesla said it produced 440,000 vehicles in the quarter, 34,000 more than it delivered, suggesting supply chain issues and production issues were not the main reasons for the disappointing sales.

Martin Viecha, Tesla’s director of investor relations, said on Twitter that the gap between deliveries and production reflected vehicles as they were being shipped to customers.

There were no trades in New York on Monday due to the New Year holiday. But the numbers are likely to heighten investor concerns about Mr. Trump. Musk is too focused on Twitter, which he acquired in October.

“There’s no way to whitewash this,” said Gary Black, managing director of investment fund Future Fund. tweetedHe expects analysts to lower their forecasts for Tesla’s sales and profits in 2023. Tesla will announce its 2022 earnings on January 1. 25.

Last week, sir. According to Reuters, Musk tried to reassure Tesla employees, telling them not to focus only on the stock price and reiterating that the automaker will become the most valuable company in the world.

As the world’s largest auto market, China is the focus of investors’ attention. A sharp rise in Covid cases in China has weighed on demand and forced the company to periodically suspend production at its largest factory in Shanghai.

In addition, Chinese manufacturer BYD has already surpassed Tesla in electric vehicle sales in China, further questioning him. Musk’s ability to dominate the world in the auto industry.

On a percentage basis, Tesla’s sales growth has outpaced that of any major competitor. The company is also one of the most profitable automakers in the world and is building new plants in Texas and Germany.

But the company faces stiffer competition from traditional automakers such as Ford, General Motors and Volkswagen. The companies have decades of experience mass-producing vehicles at low cost, and some investors believe the automakers could catch up to Tesla sooner than expected.

Tesla is also facing weak consumer demand, in part due to rising interest rates. The wait time for Tesla models has shortened, and the company has lowered prices on cars in China and offered incentives to buyers in the United States.

Car buyers, especially left-leaning, environmentally conscious consumers who tend to buy electric vehicles, also seem to be keeping Tesla at a distance because of Trump. musk. His erratic behavior on Twitter and fierce rhetoric on the social media platform endeared him to conservatives and Silicon Valley executives, but angered others.

Wedbush Securities analyst Daniel Ives implored Mr. Focusing on Tesla, Musk said fourth-quarter deliveries were good given the difficult economic environment. “We thought it was a relatively good performance,” Mr. Ives said on Twitter.

Tesla’s sales could get a boost after its vehicles become eligible for federal incentives on Jan. 1. 1. A new law removes a limit on the number of vehicles any one manufacturer can qualify for in tax credits of up to $7,500. Tesla has already used up its quota.

Tesla vehicles built at the company’s factories in Texas and California also meet the requirement that the vehicles must be built in the U.S., Canada or Mexico to qualify for the credits.

gentlemen. Musk, who is a frequent Twitter user, did not immediately respond to Monday’s delivery numbers. On Sunday, he wished his followers a “Happy First Day 2023,” adding, “One thing is for sure, it won’t be boring.”

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