Tesla recorded losses of $675.4 million in the three months ending December 2017 – the largest quarterly loss the American electric vehicle maker has posted to date.

Tesla had expected major losses in Q4 2017 after making major investments in its Model 3 sedan and the automated production line that’s building it. Tesla Chief Financial Officer Deepak Ahuja recently told Reuters that 50 percent of Tesla’s spending in 2017 went toward Model 3-related expenses, and it’s not out of the water yet. Tesla delivered just 1,550 Model 3s in Q4 2017, less than the 4,100 vehicles analysts had predicted and way off of the 5,000 unit mark Musk had set for himself. The slow trickle of Model 3s from the automaker’s Fremont factory was traced to battery production issues, and the company is still ironing out the kinks as it looks to ramp up production of the ever-important EV.

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Furthermore, Tesla is expecting to spend even more cash in 2018. It will invest hugely in the Tesla Semi and Model Y compact crossover, and a new production site in China will also require a major cash injection. In an earnings call with reporters, Musk said he remains committed to producing 5,000 Model 3s per week by the end of Q2. The entrepreneur says if Tesla can reach this production milestone, it can begin to generate a more stable operating income and begin its journey to becoming profitable.
Tesla lost nearly $2 billion in 2017.

Tesla stock swelled 35 percent in the 12 months leading up to December 2017, closing out at a market capitalization of $56.1 billion.

[Source: Reuters]