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Tesla Q1 Deliveries Up, in What Musk Calls an 'Exceptionally Difficult Quarter'

While dealing with issues around the supply chain and COVID, the electric-car maker manages to move past its record from last quarter.

Edward Moyer Senior Editor
Edward Moyer is a senior editor at CNET and a many-year veteran of the writing and editing world. He enjoys taking sentences apart and putting them back together. He also likes making them from scratch. ¶ For nearly a quarter of a century, he's edited and written stories about various aspects of the technology world, from the US National Security Agency's controversial spying techniques to historic NASA space missions to 3D-printed works of fine art. Before that, he wrote about movies, musicians, artists and subcultures.
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Electric-car maker Tesla managed to steer through supply chain issues and pandemic problems to deliver a total of 310,000 vehicles worldwide in the first quarter. The record number for the company is just higher than last quarter's 308,600 deliveries, but a rise of about 70% from the 184,800 deliveries reported for the year-ago period.

"This was an *exceptionally* difficult quarter due to supply chain interruptions & China zero Covid policy," CEO Elon Musk said in a tweet this weekend. "Outstanding work by Tesla team & key suppliers saved the day."

Tesla's Shanghai factory has had to halt production several times due to COVID lockdowns in the city, as noted by The New York Times. The factory's current pause will continue into the coming week, reports said on Sunday.

At the same time, a global chip shortage has hit automakers especially hard. Tesla's skill with software, though, has let it swap in available chips for those that are hard to get, the Times said. On Friday, both GM and Toyota reported a drop in US sales, citing supply chain problems.

When breaking down its total delivery numbers, Tesla typically puts the four vehicles it currently sells into two groups. The company said that in the first quarter, its Model 3 and Model Y, its less expensive offerings, together accounted for 295,324 deliveries. The Model S and Model X accounted for 14,724.

As for production numbers (distinct from deliveries), Tesla said it produced a total of 305,407 vehicles, with Models 3 and Y making up 291,189 of those, and Models S and X making up 14,218.

In late March, Tesla began deliveries of the first vehicles to roll off the line at its new factory near Berlin. The company is scheduled to post its first-quarter financial results on April 20.