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Tesla registrations drop in key California market


SAN FRANCISCO: Registrations of Tesla Inc vehicles in California, by far the largest market of the luxury electric car maker, fell 24 per cent in April from a year ago, according to data from IHS Markit.

Tesla said in a statement on Friday that it was extremely misleading to look at registration data from one month, that deliveries varied month-to-month for operational reasons, and that deliveries increased by more than 53 per cent in the second quarter compared with a year earlier.

“Looking at the quarter in total is the smallest time frame in which to obtain reliable, meaningful information about our deliveries.

Deliveries naturally fluctuate from month to month for a variety of normal operational reasons.

“In the first month of the quarter, Tesla builds cars primarily for overseas markets, in the second month for North American markets (not including the West Coast) and in the third month for the West Coast,” Tesla said. Focusing on April registrations “cherry picks” data, it said.

Tesla earlier this week reported first-half global deliveries of its Model S and its Model X SUV at the low end of its own forecast, driving down the stock and raising questions about demand for the older models.

The findings come as investors worry that demand for Tesla’s luxury Model S sedan is waning ahead of the mass market Model 3 launch.

Tesla’s share price more than doubled between early December and late June as investors bet on Chief Executive Elon Musk’s strategy to transform the low-volume luxury electric car maker into a diversified producer of mass market vehicles, storage batteries, electric commercial trucks and rooftop solar panels. — Reuters

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