Tesla in a statement blamed its own “hubris” for stuffing its Model X crossover with too much technology, which made it difficult to produce in volume. In the first quarter, the electric car maker was able to ship just 2,400 Model X cars.
Model X to blame
Tesla said it added too much new technology to its luxury SUV, and both the company and its suppliers could not manufacture enough key parts. The automaker’s statement, which appears to have been written by CEO Elon Musk himself, said that a mere half dozen parts, out of 8,000 in the Model X, were the cause of the slowdown in the production.
In addition to the sheer amount of technology in the Model X, Tesla blamed the shortfall to a failure to ensure that suppliers could deliver as promised and its inability to manufacture the necessary parts in-house. However, the U.S. firm also told investors that the production issues have been solved, and Model X builds are now going according to “plan.”
“Tesla is addressing all three root causes to ensure that these mistakes are not repeated with the Model 3 launch,” the statement read.
In the first quarter, a total of 14,820 vehicles were delivered. The U.S. automaker was expecting to deliver 16,000 vehicles in the quarter, and this means it missed that goal by a little more than 7%. The tally includes 12,420 Model S sedans and 2,400 Model X SUVs.
Tesla on track to meet 2016 target
On Saturday, Musk tweeted that to keep up with the demand, the company will need to build a plant in Europe. He added that the company will focus on accelerating the manufacturing process for the new vehicle. The electric car maker said it is on track “to deliver 80,000 to 90,000 new vehicles in 2016,” up from 50,580 vehicles delivered in 2015.
For its Model 3 sedan, which will have a starting price of about $35,000, the electric car maker has taken about 300,000 reservations since pre-sales began on March 31. The first lower-priced sedans from Tesla are expected to be delivered in late 2017.
After several days of gains tied to the Model 3 frenzy, the stock price for the U.S. automaker fell about 3% in after-hours trading yesterday. Year to date, the stock is up by almost 4%.