Tesla Motors brings forward Model S release date

Tesla Motors Model S sedan car Tesla is pinning its hopes on the Model S car

US electric car maker Tesla Motors has brought forward production of its new car, pushing its shares up 11%.

The company said it was close to completing safety tests on its Model S saloon and could begin delivering the car to customers in June, a month earlier than expected.

Tesla expects 90% of its revenue to come from the Model S this year.

In mid-morning trade, its shares rose $3.15 to $33.19.

Analysis

For months now, Tesla has been the world's only carmaker not manufacturing cars.

Production of its Roadster came to an end last year, and it has taken until now to get the Tesla S ready to roll off the production line.

The cheaper and more practical saloon will enter a world that is very different from the one entered by the sportscar back in 2008.

The number of rivals, both niche and mainstream, offering plug-in cars has grown exponentially.

Tesla can only hope its competitive advantage of being novel and unique has not been eroded.

"We plan to continue making customer deliveries on a slow, methodical ramp, and remain confident in our target of 5,000 vehicle deliveries by year end," chief executive Elon Musk said in a letter to shareholders.

Tesla reported a first-quarter net loss of $89.9m (£55.6m), compared with $48.9m for the same period a year ago.

Revenue was $30.2m, down from $49m last year, reflecting the end of Roadster sales in North America.

But the positive production news prompted Tesla to lift its full-year revenue outlook by $10m.

It now expects full-year revenue to be between $560m and $600m.

Analysts have been waiting to see if the launch of the Model S will finally transform the loss-making Tesla into a profitable company.

More on This Story

Global Car Industry

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

More Business stories

RSS

Features

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.