Tesla car sales grow more slowly than expected, amplifying Concerns

On Monday, Tesla reported that their deliveries during the fourth quarter had risen by 18% compared to the prior three months. Alarmingly, this figure did not meet Wall Street analysts’ expectations and has placed added pressure on CEO Elon Musk to concentrate more on manufacturing cars instead of his Twitter antics.

Tesla proudly reported that they had delivered 405,000 electric cars in the fourth quarter of 2020 – exceeding Wall Street analysts’ forecasts for 420,000 vehicles. This is a remarkable feat, especially when compared to their third quarter sales record of 343,000 vehicles.

In 2022, Tesla sold an impressive total of 1.3 million cars—a 40% growth from the year prior that sadly fell short of the company’s 50% annual target.

Tesla’s growth has been exceptional by automotive industry standards, but even more impressive when measured against companies in the tech sector of Silicon Valley. This meteoric rise is what made Tesla the most valuable carmaker on earth.

Recently, Tesla’s stronghold in the electric car market has started to wane due to encroaching competition from larger automakers and steep borrowing rates that have made their cars more expensive for those taking out loans.

Tesla’s mortality was made abundantly clear in 2022 when its stocks plummeted an astounding 65%, and investors were forced to turn their attention away from Tesla’s ambitious plans for world domination and on more tangible metrics such as sales or profits.

The fourth-quarter deliveries fell short of the already reduced predictions from analysts, and even further under what Tesla executives had forecast only a few months prior.

Tesla reported that it had manufactured 440,000 vehicles during the quarter, a rise of 34,000 beyond what was delivered – indicating supply chain difficulties and manufacture issues were not the primary source for unsatisfactory sales.

Martin Viecha, the head of investor relations at Tesla, proclaimed on Twitter that deliveries were lagging behind production due to vehicles being transported across land and sea for customers.

On Monday, no trading took place in New York due to the annual holiday. Nevertheless, investors are likely to be further alarmed by this data which suggests that Musk is overly preoccupied with his October purchase of Twitter.

Unapologetically, Gary Black – the managing director of Future Fund (an investment fund) – foreshadowed on Twitter that analysis would likely reduce their estimations of Tesla’s sales and income in 2023. The corporation will release its 2022 fiscal report by January 25th.

Last week, Musk attempted to console Tesla workers by encouraging them not to be preoccupied with the stock rate and reasserting that the carmaker would become the world’s most valuable company, as reported by Reuters.

Although the news is disheartening, investors are hoping that Tesla can regain momentum and help take electric cars to the next level. For now, it appears that Tesla still has much to prove in order to regain investors’ trust and meet its own ambitious goals.

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