Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) continues to surprise over and over again. Shares rose on Tuesday and continued upward again today, possibly still propelled upward by the company’s recent positive earnings preannouncement. Last week at the Detroit Auto Show, the automaker said it believes it will beat its revenue guidance by 20% when it reports earnings. Also Tesla reported that it shipped 6,900 vehicles during the fourth quarter, beating its guidance of a little under 6,000.

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What might be driving Tesla now

Daniel Sparks of The Motley Fool (via Daily Finance) considers whether Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) has a shot at returning to its record high of more than $190 a share any time soon. Of course where this company’s stock will go next is hard to predict, especially because of the wild swings its shares have seen in both directions over the last year.

Sparks lists a couple of things that could be driving shares of Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) right now. He notes that after a handful of fires in a relatively short amount of time, the automaker has moved passed that, and things have been quiet on this front for a while. Those fires were probably one of the biggest reasons shares of Tesla fell so quickly, and without any more fires, it seems natural that Tesla would be in recovery mode. However, the volatility of this stock means that even the slightest bit of bad news could send shares plummeting again.

And then of course there are the early reports from Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) it will probably beat guidance for the December quarter. A series of earnings beats served to send shares higher and higher last year.

Where to next for Tesla?

Sparks also notes that one of the key issues Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) will be dealing with in the near term is supply and whether it is able to keep up with demand for its vehicles. Investors appear to be expecting the automaker to be able to produce hundreds of thousands of mass market vehicles every year by 2016 or 2017. That’s a significant jump from where the company is now.

This year will be very telling for Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) in terms of showing just how quickly they can ramp up production of the Model S. We could finally see some signs suggesting whether the rapid ramp-up investors are hoping for might actually be feasible. When the company releases its official earnings report for the December quarter, any kind of full-year guidance provided could be a big catalyst for its stock.

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