Back to Earth: Tesla's losses grow with Model 3 delays

Don Hladiuk was able to mount a camera close to the launch site of the Falcon Heavy rocket

But it will be hard to top the Tesla in orbit.

Musk says Tesla is closing in on its goal of producing a whopping 5,000 Model 3 sedans per week. It just announced quarterly losses of $675 million. Multiple customers that have had deposits placed on the Model 3 cars since 2016 are reporting that they received an email stating that the vehicle will be delivered in "late 2018", while others are being informed that they'll have to wait until "early 2019", to receive the auto they paid for years previously.

The Model 3, priced starting at United States dollars 35,000, is key to Tesla's effort to becoming a mass producer and reshaping the automotive market. "The competitive strength of Tesla long-term is not the vehicle, it's the factory", said Musk.

One problem that is holding back the Model 3 production is the Gigafactory.

With few surprises in the fourth-quarter report and an outlook by Tesla of business-as-usual, analysts maintained price targets and ratings on Tesla.

Tesla remains a money losing proposition (it has never made a full-year profit since going public in 2010).

During the firm's latest earnings call, the entrepreneur said: "If we can send a Roadster to the asteroid belt, we can probably solve Model 3 production".

"The data point everyone wants, we didn't get", Spak wrote, which was the current Model 3 production rate.

As the competition is still nowhere near to selling a Model 3 alternative, Tesla still has time.

Some Tesla customers, however, are not happy about the delay. The package requires Tesla, which is worth a little less than $60 billion now, to grow in $50 billion leaps to a staggering $650 billion market capitalization over the next decade. Musk predicted Tesla could increase the velocity of its assembly lines from today's upper limit of about 0.2 meters per second, or walking speed, to something approaching "jogging speed", or 20 times today's pace. But Musk said Wednesday he has no plans to step aside as CEO.

CASH BURN: Tesla has lofty targets, including building a plant in China and launching a small SUV in 2020. All of that work is many, many years in the future. Musk reportedly said his rocket is a game-changer in terms of profitability.

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