Tesla delivered 76,230 vehicles in 2016, falling slightly short of its goal of delivering 80,000 cars for the year. The electric carmaker claimed that “short-term production challenges” starting at the end of October were to blame for the shipment of fewer vehicles than anticipated.
Tesla said the transition to new Autopilot hardware resulted in the company’s vehicle production being “weighted more heavily towards the end of the quarter than we had originally planned.” In total, about 2,750 Tesla vehicles missed being counted as deliveries in the fourth quarter of 2016, which the company ascribes to “last-minute delays in transport or because the customer was unable to physically take delivery.”
Tesla said that even though those sales were counted toward 2016, the deliveries were not because the customers did not physically take possession of their cars. Tesla says about 6,450 vehicles are still in transit, and that their deliveries will be counted toward the first quarter of 2017.
“We were ultimately able to recover and hit our production goal, but the delay in production resulted in challenges that impacted quarterly deliveries, including, among other things, cars missing shipping cutoffs for Europe and Asia,” the company says. “Although we tried to recover these deliveries and expedite others by the end of the quarter, time ran out before we could deliver all customer cars.”
While it fell short on delivery, Tesla was able to beat its production rate for 2015. Tesla said it produced 24,882 vehicles in the fourth quarter of 2016, resulting in a total of 83,922 vehicles produced in 2016. This was an increase of 64 percent from 2015.
Vehicle demand in Q4 was particularly strong, Tesla says. Net orders for Model S and X, which were an all-time record, were 52 percent higher than Q4 2015 and 24 percent higher than the company’s previous record quarter in Q3 2016.
Early last month, Tesla announced that it will begin charging owners who leave their cars at Supercharger stations after they have completed charging. The new fee is an attempt to increase turnover at the charging stations, which have become increasingly congested as more Teslas are sold.