Tesla Motors has delivered on chief executive Elon Musk’s promise to make money during its latest quarter after fulfilling his pledge to boost production of its first electric car designed for the mass market.
The company earned 311.5 million dollars (£241.5 million) during the three months ending in September, swinging from a loss of 619 million dollars (£480 million) at the same time last year.
It is only the third time Tesla has posted a quarterly profit in its eight-year history as a public company and the first time in two years.
A big jump in Tesla’s output of its mass-market Model 3 car powered the breakthrough. The manufacturing increase and moneymaking quarter are two things Mr Musk promised would happen in early August.
Revenue more than doubled from last year to 6.8 billion dollars (£5.3 billion) to easily top analyst estimates, just as the profit did.
Tesla’s stock soared 13% to 326.12 dollars (£252.8) after the numbers came out.
In a conference call with analysts late on Wednesday, Mr Musk predicted Tesla would remain profitable from this point on.
“This quarter was an important step toward that,” he said after getting choked up talking about the support Tesla’s customers have shown the company. “I am incredibly excited about what lies ahead.”
The third-quarter performance should help restore some of the credibility he lost after he followed up the bold profit prediction in August with a startling tweet informing the world he had secured financing to pull off a buyout of Tesla.