Tesla (TSLA) Tops Q1 EPS by 8c; Expects to Exceed FY13 Delivery Target

May 8, 2013 4:33 PM EDT
(Updated - May 8, 2013 4:38 PM EDT)

Tesla Motors, Inc. (NASDAQ: TSLA) reported Q1 EPS of $0.12, $0.08 better than the analyst estimate of $0.04. Revenue for the quarter came in at $562 million versus the consensus estimate of $492.02 million.

Gross margin improved 9 points to 17 percent.

Tesla is reaffirming prior guidance of a gross margin of 25 percent in Q4 2013, assuming zero ZEV credit revenue. The company said, "This may turn out to be greater than zero, but we are not counting on it. What really matters is improving fundamental automotive gross margin, excluding regulatory credits. On this front, Tesla improved nine percentage points from the prior quarter and continues to improve every month."

Outlook from the company:

"While we expect to build about 5,000 Model S vehicles in Q2, some cars will be in transit to Europe for start of deliveries in Q3. As a result, we expect to deliver slightly over 4,500 vehicles during Q2, all in North America. For the full year of 2013, we expect to exceed our prior target of 20,000 worldwide deliveries and feel comfortable raising guidance to about 21,000 deliveries.

"The lease accounting treatment for cars sold through our new financing plan will have no impact on our cash flows, and we expect to be roughly breakeven on cash flow from operations in Q2, despite launch costs in Europe and a huge increase in service centers, stores and Supercharger stations. However, the deferred revenue recognition required by GAAP for lease accounting will lead to a net loss on paper in Q2. We plan to provide information so that investors can evaluate our results both with and without the impact of lease accounting, as we believe the actual effect on Tesla is positive.

"Operating expenses are expected to increase moderately in Q2. R&D expenses are expected to increase slightly from Q1 as the pace of product development starts to pick up. SG&A expenses will continue to rise moderately, primarily due to the growth in our stores and service centers.

"We plan to spend about $200 million on capital expenditures in 2013, as we conclude the majority of our investment in the Tesla Factory and Model S tooling. Capital spending also includes the expansion of our service, store and Supercharger networks and new product development."

For earnings history and earnings-related data on Tesla Motors, Inc. (TSLA) click here.

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