Electric Car Maker Tesla Posts First Profit

Electric Car Maker Tesla Posts First Profit

Profit hit $11 million in the first quarter as revenues rose 83%.

SAN FRANCISCO -- As the electric carmaker beat its own forecasts and surprised market analysts, Tesla Motors said Wednesday it posted its first-ever quarterly profit.

 The California-based firm said it earned a profit of $11 million in the first quarter as revenues rose 83% from the prior quarter to $562 million.

"Tesla reached profitability in the first quarter of 2013 for the first time in our 10-year history," the company said.

"We exceeded our own targets for deliveries, significantly expanded gross margin, and improved execution throughout the company."

The statement said "we consistently produced 400 or more Model S vehicles per week, for a total of over 5,000 during the quarter" and counted revenues from vehicles.

Tesla cited "strong global demand for Model S" saying it is "currently receiving orders at a rate greater than 20,000 per year worldwide" and noted that it seen "significant upside potential in Europe and Asia."

Tesla conducted an initial public offering in 2011, raising $226 million.

The first model, the Tesla Roadster, cost more than $100,000 and can go nearly 250 miles (400 kilometers) on a single charge.

It later launched the Model S, starting at $49,900, but with financing, tax incentives and resale guarantees aimed at winning over consumers.

Tesla also provides electric powertrains and other equipment to carmakers including Toyota and Mercedes-Benz.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2013

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