Tesla delivers a record number of cars, Overcoming challenges

Despite supply chain challenges, Tesla says it had a record number of its vehicles in the first quarter. The electric carmaker states it delivered more than 310,000 automobiles in the first three months of this year.

That was nearly 70% higher than the exact time last year. Chief executive Elon Musk says the improvement came despite an “extremely difficult quarter,” including strict coronavirus policies in China, where Tesla has a so-called ‘Giga factory.’

According to figures released over the weekend, Tesla delivered 310,048 cars from the beginning of this year to the end of March, up from 184,800 a year before. “This was a tough quarter due to supply chain interruptions and China zero Covid policy,” Mr. Musk said on Twitter.

“Outstanding work by Tesla team and key suppliers saved the day.” The bulk of deliveries was of Tesla’s Model 3 sedan and Model Y. Mr. Musk previously said the Model Y, which was launched in 2019, was part of Tesla’s plan to reach a broader market.

It has a more extended range per charge than the Model 3 – which was launched two years earlier. The world’s most valuable carmaker will release its full financial results on 20 April. Tesla has a ‘Giga factory’ in Shanghai, a high-volume car manufacturing plant, producing lithium-ion batteries that power the vehicles.

It was reportedly shut as the city saw a surge in coronavirus infections. According to reports that cited an internal memo, Tesla did not resume production at the site on Monday as planned. The company did not immediately reply to a demand for comment.

In January, Mr. Musk said he expected Tesla to grow by more than 50% this year despite supply chain problems. The firm reported a record $5.5bn (£4.2bn) profit last year. Chinese officials imposed a lockdown in Shanghai, a major manufacturing and financial center, for mass Covid testing last week.

Businesses, including rival carmakers Volkswagen, have also scaled back their operations in Shanghai. The city is also a hub for semiconductor and electronics manufacturing and is the world’s busiest shipping port.