Tesla’s worker push helps hit Model 3 production goals

Electric automaker Tesla produced three times more Model 3 sedans in the second quarter compared to the first, meeting a key production target as the company recorded its most productive quarter ever.

This comes after CEO Elon Musk pulled out all the stops to ramp up productivity in recent days.

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Tesla said in a press release on Monday that, for the first time, Model 3 production surpassed combined Model S and X production. More than 18,400 Model 3 vehicles were manufactured, thanks in part to “a significant increase in production towards the end of the quarter.”

The electric automaker said a new general assembly line, referred to as GA4, was responsible for about one-fifth of the Model 3 sedans produced last week.

The company increased its production targets for the Model 3 to 6,000 per week by late next month, reaffirming expectations for positive net income and cash flow in the coming two quarters.

At the start of the second quarter, Tesla was producing just 2,000 Model 3 sedans per week.

Last week, Japanese electronics giant Panasonic – which is the exclusive battery partner for the electric automaker’s vehicles – said a “sharp improvement in production” at the automaker was causing occasional battery cell shortages.

The carmaker produced a total of 53,339 vehicles in the second quarter.

In June, Tesla announced it would cut 9% of its workforce as part of an organizational restructuring aimed at reducing costs and boosting profits. Throughout its nearly 15 years of existence, the company has never made a profit, which Musk cited as a “fair criticism” of the company.

He added that while Tesla has never been driven by profit-making incentives, the company will never achieve its goals unless it can demonstrate "sustainable profitability."

Tesla shares have gained 10% this year, exceeding gains in both the Nasdaq Composite and the S&P 500.