In total, Tesla wound up delivering 56,065 Model 3s in North America in the third quarter, which is 225 more than it said when it announced initial delivery counts for the quarter in early October. The company also sounds ready to cash in on demand in other markets, with Musk and Ahuja saying Tesla will start taking orders in Europe and China for the Model 3 "before the end of this year." After finally turning a profit on the Model 3 earlier this year, Tesla now says it is now pulling in more than a 20 percent margin on the car.


Despite the boost in production's effect on Tesla's bottom line, the company is still running into problems related to that explosion in scale. Tesla has had problems with customer service, with Musk recently admitting that the company has "major gaps" in its nationwide coverage. And while the company's cars consistently earn some of the highest safety ratings in the industry, its widely documented quality control issues continue to plague customers new and old. Before the earnings letter dropped on Wednesday, Consumer Reports said that Tesla ranked the third worst for reliability among major automakers.

Musk, despite his foibles, may have bamboozled investors into funding Tesla long enough to pull off viability... but will Tesla be able to grow into the market at hoped-for scale with the majors also now producing electric cars?

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