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Congratulations Mr. Musk – Tesla Motors’ Announces First Profits (ever)


First Tesla Model S Delivered - June 2012Inventor and entrepreneur Elon Musk is nothing if not charismatic, which is a necessary thing when trying to manufacture and market the first electric vehicle [EV] that looks like someone drivable.

Far from being a bug-like single-seat battery-miser, the Tesla Model S offers power, performance, technology, range, and even free fuel forever, but for a price. So far, Tesla has yet to make a profit. Still in its infancy, the EV market still needs to hit its stride, and other manufacturers are starting to offer them as well.

One thing that separates Musk from the pack, though, is that Tesla is his only game, not just what could be CAFE [Corporate Average Fuel Economy] fodder for other manufactures. To make his play, Musk has poured nearly $870 million into Tesla, substantial amounts coming from investors and federal loans, which still have to be paid back.

Last week Musk tweeted, “Am happy to report that Tesla was narrowly cash flow positive last week. Continued improvement expected through year end.” I can’t wait to see more, Mr. Musk.

With over 10,000 Model S still on order, Tesla’s ramping up production to 400 vehicles per week is still going to take some time to work through the list, but the more vehicles that Tesla delivers, the closer Musk gets to realizing his goal of a viable EV manufacturer.

Those waiting for their Model S, as well as investors and loan administrators, ought to be happy to see some profit coming out of the company, but will probably still have to wait a little before seeing any dividends.

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