Investor's Corner

Tesla (TSLA) posts Q2 2018 financial results: $4B revenue, profitability in focus

Tesla’s second-quarter earnings for 2018 saw the California-based carmaker beat Wall Street revenue estimates after posting $4B billion in revenue and missed earnings estimates with a non-GAAP loss of $520 million.

The results, which were posted in an update letter to investors after the closing bell on Wednesday, August 1st, showed second-quarter earnings of -$3.06 per share, slightly worse analyst estimates of -$2.92 per share. Compared to the previous year, revenue grew 43.5%.

The company burned through $430M in cash in the second quarter.


The company’s revenue for the second quarter consisted of $3.36B in automotive revenue and $374M from their energy and battery storage division. Automotive revenue saw an increase of 46.8% compared to the same period last year. The energy and battery storage division saw an increase of 30.6% compared to the same period last year.

Automotive revenue increased by 22.75% compared to Q1 2018, largely due to the rapid increase in Model 3 sales, while energy generation and storage declined by 8.7%. Tesla deployed 84 MW of energy generation and 203 MWh of energy storage products in the second quarter as well.


Tesla was able to deliver 18,449 Model 3 vehicles during the second quarter of 2018. In the quarter the company produced 28,578 Model 3’s. The company’s Q2 2018 Update Letter stated that the company still expects to reach its production goal of 6,000 Model 3’s per week by the end of August.

The company is aiming to reach a gross margin of 25% on the Model 3 in the long-term but set an initial goal of break-even for the second quarter. The company beat that goal in the quarter posting a slightly positive gross margin. After conducting a complete breakdown, an automotive expert recently estimated that Tesla could achieve a 30% or higher gross margin on the vehicle.

“Over the past 12 months, we have overcome bottlenecks across various stages of the Model 3 manufacturing process. Last quarter, it became clear that GA3, our main general assembly line, would likely become a production constraint if certain issues were not addressed. This assembly line, which is where we add all the components to a painted metal body, was designed to work with hundreds of robotic lifters that bring components to the line. Due to the density of the line and the relatively high downtime of the lifters, ramping GA3 became substantially more complicated than we had anticipated. That said, significant progress has been made in the last few months, and GA3 is now expected to reach a production rate of 5,000 per week very soon,” Tesla stated in the letter.

The company reported that they have received over 60,000 test drive requests for the Model 3. Most Tesla stores received their first Model 3 test drive vehicles and the company plans to continue deploying more Model 3’s to other stores, with a focus on the new Model 3 Dual Motor Performance. The company stated that early results show that the Model 3’s “test drive-to-order conversion rate” is higher than the Model S and X.


Tesla deployed 203MWh of energy storage in the second quarter and 84MW of solar energy generation systems. Tesla stated that the company’s solar and energy storage division has undergone massive changes as they prepare to exclusively sell the products online and at Tesla stores.

Energy Storage and Generation generated $374M worth of revenue for the company in the quarter. Tesla stated that 68% of all installations were cash and loan based, compared to lower-revenue generating lease-based sales.

“We are steadily ramping Solar Roof production in Buffalo and are also continuing to iterate on the product design and production process, learning from our early factory production and field installations. We have deployed Solar Roof on additional homes in Q2 and are gaining valuable feedback from each new installation. We plan to ramp production more toward the end of 2018 and are working hard to simplify the production and installation process before deploying significant capital into factory automation,” Tesla stated in the quarterly letter.


Tesla still expects to deliver 100,000 Model S and X vehicles for 2018. The company also stated it targets to produce 50,000-55,000 Model 3’s in the third quarter. Tesla still did not disclose an overall production target for the Model 3 in 2018. The Model 3 is expected to carry a 15% gross margin for the third quarter and 20% in the fourth quarter.

Tesla reiterated that they expect to be GAAP profitable in both the third and fourth quarter of 2018. Tesla also stated that they expect the company to be profitable going forward, despite rapid growth.

Tesla has just over $2.23 billion in cash at the end of the quarter, down from $2.67 billion in the previous quarter.

Today’s trading session ended with TSLA closing up .9% at $300.85. After-hours, the stock was trading up 3.9%.

Tesla’s full Q2 2018 Update Letter can be accessed here.

Tesla (TSLA) posts Q2 2018 financial results: $4B revenue, profitability in focus
To Top