Musk soothes wor­ries

The Denver Post - - BUSINESS - By Dee-Ann Durbin

DETROIT» Elec­tric car maker Tesla Inc. calmed jit­tery in­vestors Wed­nes­day, as­sur­ing them it can meet ag­gres­sive pro­duc­tion tar­gets for its new lower-cost Model 3 sedan.

CEO Elon Musk said in­vestors should have “zero con­cern” about whether Tesla will be able to make 10,000 Model 3s per week by next year. Tesla just de­liv­ered the first 30 Model 3s to em­ploy­ees last week.

“This is maybe the best I’ve ever felt about Tesla, to be frank,” Musk said on a con­fer­ence call with an­a­lysts and me­dia.

That — along with a low­erthan-ex­pected net loss in the sec­ond quar­ter — sent Tesla’s shares soar­ing. They were up al­most 8 per­cent to $351.12 in af­ter-hours trad­ing.

Musk wor­ried in­vestors last week when he warned that Tesla was about to em­bark on “at least six months of man­u­fac­tur­ing hell” as it tried to get Model 3 pro­duc­tion to 5,000 cars per week by De­cem­ber. On Wed­nes­day, Musk said there’s al­ways a risk of ma­chines break­ing down or sup­pli­ers not com­ing through, but he doesn’t ex­pect sig­nif­i­cant changes to that plan.

“We know this. We signed up for it. I’m not blam­ing hell be­cause we bought the ticket,” he said.

Tesla burned through $1 bil­lion in the sec­ond quar­ter pre­par­ing for the Model 3’s ar­rival. It opened 29 new stores and ser­vice cen­ters.

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