Tesla Releases Positive Q1 Profit Report

As announced in advance last month, Tesla Motors has become profitable for the first time in its 10 year history.

Its profit for the quarter ending March 31 on $562 million in sales from delivery of 4,900 Model S sedans out of over 5,000 built was $11 million.

Tesla also doubled its gross margin in the quarter to 17 percent and it is on track, it says, to 25 percent by year’s end. Moreover it will not include profits from sales of “green credits,” to other car makers.

It did however record $68 million in such credits last quarter, or about $14,000 per car.

Production efficiencies included cutting the time required to build a Model S by 40 percent from December to March while improving inventory management so raw materials declined almost by 26 percent while unit production increased by 80 percent.

Tesla says it is receiving new global orders at a rate greater than 20,000 worldwide, and within the North American market, customers appear to be selling customers on their Model S as sales are regionally clustered.

In all, Tesla projects U.S. demand to exceed 15,000 units per year and global demand above 30,000 per year

As previously reported also, plans are to develop and launch a car costing much less than the Model S, but for now, Tesla is counting on its new financing plan to reduce the barrier to entry of its existing product.

TSLA stock finished up by 0.5 percent on Wednesday at $55.79 per share.

To see a complete copy of the Tesla letter to its stockholders, click here.