Thursday 4 April 2019 3:46 pm

Tesla shares fall after Elon Musk's company confirms huge quarterly drop in car deliveries

Tesla shares fell nearly nine per cent in early US trading this afternoon, after the electric car giant said its deliveries have suffered a record 31 per cent quarterly drop.

The manufacturer’s stock value fell to $266.32 this afternoon, having closed yesterday at $291.81 as investors digested the results.

Read more: Elon Musk helps Sheryl Crow troubleshoot her Tesla

The manufacturer reported 63,000 deliveries from January to March, down almost a third compared to the 90,966 it delivered in the fourth quarter of 2018.

Analysts had expected it to deliver around 76,000 cars.

Tesla did, however, commit to its full-year guidance of delivering between 360,000 and 400,000 vehicles in 2019.

The deliveries comprised 50,900 Model 3 electric cars and 12,100 Model S and Model X cars.

Tesla added that 10,600 cars were on their way to customers down to strong demand in China and Europe towards the end of the quarter.

The firm has plans to build a factory in China to meet the growing demand, “but that goal still seems some way off,” said Michael Hewson, analyst at CMC Markets.

He added the 400,000 vehicle delivery target for this year was “a tall order”.

“Tesla would have to deliver at least 100,000 cars each quarter, for the next three quarters. This would be a record, and well above the previous record of over 90,000 cars in the fourth quarter last year.

“Being a Tesla shareholder in recent years has been one of those sensations that usually has one reaching for the travel sickness tablets.”

The deliveries comprised 50,900 Model 3 electric cars and 12,100 Model S and Model X cars.

Last month the new chair of Tesla said that its outspoken chief executive Elon Musk uses Twitter “wisely”, in an interview today.

“Twitter is part of everyday business for many executives today,” Robyn Denholm told Bloomberg, “From my perspective, he uses it wisely.”

Musk faced heat from the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) after tweeting in August that he had secured funding to take the public company private, sending its shares soaring.

Read more: Elon Musk's lawyers call SEC contempt order 'retaliation' and 'censorship'

In July, Musk used Twitter to accuse a British diver involved in the rescue of a youth football team from a Thai cave system of being a paedophile after the diver criticised a mini-submarine Musk had offered to help with the rescue.

The diver is reportedly taking legal action against Musk for defamation.