Tesla has been tested in a number of ways throughout the year, in smaller ways when a fire broke out at one of its California facilities and in even bigger ways in the form of mounting pressure and scrutiny from the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) on CEO Elon Musk. Despite the adversity, Musk has kept his eyes firmly planted on the most important goal: maintaining his word to deliver as many of the Model 3s to his eagerly awaiting customers as possible.
On target and maybe early
According to Electrek, the company is on target with this objective and may have even exceeded its own projected yield. In dramatic form, the company is said to have met all of its Quarter 3 (Q3) goals, and then some, with two days still left to go.
The company had set a guiding production of 50,000 to 55,000 Model 3 vehicles for the third quarter in an aim to become profitable. Meanwhile, blogger Bill Maurer of Seeking Alpha has also been making his own estimates of Model 3 Q3 production numbers using Bloomberg's Model 3 tracker.
"If we use where the current count stands and the current rate is applied for the last few days of the quarter, this model would imply production for Q3 at a little over 52,800 units," predicted Maurer just four days ago. However, two days later he upped that "assumption" to 56,000.
In Tesla's second quarter of 2018 update, the firm did reveal ambitious targets for Model 3 production. "Having achieved our 5,000 per week milestone, we will now continue to increase that further, with our aim being to produce 6,000 Model 3 vehicles per week by late August," read the statement.
A turning point for Tesla
In a company-wide email to his employees at Tesla from earlier this month, Musk delivered the ultimate pep talk, calling on them to focus even harder on the target, and reminding them of the scale of their achievement.
Company Updatehttps://t.co/XouSWThBT0— Tesla (@Tesla) September 7, 2018
Many of the words he shared could also be interpreted as a response to his recent critics themselves:
"For a while, there will be a lot of fuss and noise in the media. Just ignore them. Results are what matter and we are creating the most mind-blowing growth in the history of the automotive industry. Even the Ford Model T, which held the world record for the fastest growing car in history, didn’t grow as fast in sales or production as the Model 3."
Beyond sharing information about the financial gains of the company, Musk was likely seeking to address the tide of criticism of the safety of his fleet of cars with the announcement of new rounds of crash tests. It is no small coincidence that he tweeted out, on the same day, two separate stories from the American and Japanese media about Model 3 successful safety tests.
As many experienced industry leaders know--or come to learn throughout their careers--critics may come and go, but if one sticks to the original vision guided by innovation and is committed to maintaining high standards which reflect the best possible benefit for the customer, this is what will be remembered the most in the years to come.
In this way, Musk can surely consider this quarterly objective a financial, as well as symbolic, victory. The numbers speak for themselves.