Deliveries of Model 3s in the period were 63,150, a 15pc rise and in line with Tesla's guidance but slightly below the 63,700 analysts had been expecting.
Over the course of 2018, Tesla delivered a total of 245,240 vehicles, comprised of 145,846 Model 3, as well as 99,394 Model S and Model X. The company notes in its report that its deliveries in 2018 are nearly equal to its total deliveries in all prior years combined. All this and more on Green Car Reports.
Tesla fell just short of its target to deliver 100 000 of its more expensive Model S and Model X vehicles for the year, selling 99 394 units.
In its previous results statement, the company promised to focus on increasing its production rate.
Tesla plunged after disappointing Model 3 deliveries and an across-the-lineup price cut prompted concerns that the carmaker may bump up against a ceiling for demand.
The price cut of $2,000 beginning on Wednesday on the Model 3 - as well as on its higher-priced Model S and Model X - took the market by surprise and weighed on the stock, pushing it down 6.8 percent to close at $310.12, after falling as much as 10 percent during the session. In comparison, Wall Street projected 64,900 for the Model 3, 14,200 for the Model S and 13,600 for the Model X, based on average figures from previous quarters compiled by FactSet.
According to the 2017 tax overhaul, electric vehicle buyers receive a $7,500 federal tax credit, but that only applies for the first 200,000 electric cars a company sells.
Tesla said it sometimes stores vehicles on lots as they're being shipped to company dealerships across the nation.
It was only the third time that Tesla has posted a quarterly profit in its eight-year history as a public company and the first time in two years. Once it did so, the company had two more quarters until its full tax credit was cut in half. But customers in those markets still have several weeks to wait, with the company now saying those deliveries will start in February. That still doesn't quite make up for the $7500 incentive's loss (combined with the new $3750 tax credit, customers now save around $5750), but it's certainly better than nothing.
As of the end of September, the company reported $9.7 billion in long-term debt and another $3.6 billion in accounts payable owed to parts suppliers and other companies.
Tesla's achievements in 2018 likely represent the biggest single-year growth in the history of the automotive industry. Moody's predicted the company would have to raise more capital.