Tesla Q2 earnings to reflect factory woes, but expansion

Tesla’s earnings report on Wednesday will be mostly looking backward on a weekslong plant closure in China that significantly cut production there, as well as the slow launches in Texas and Berlin.

The company said in early July that its global deliveries fell 18 percent to 254,695 in the second quarter after two years of gains. But that downturn was compared with the first quarter, not to the year-earlier period. In a year-on-year basis, Tesla’s sales were up 27 percent.

Tesla said in the press release that June 2022 “was the highest vehicle production month in Tesla’s history” — an indication that China was fully back online and Texas and Berlin were seeing higher volume production.

Tesla has not said if Musk will appear on the earnings call Wednesday, but there are several issues that investors and financial analysts would like to hear about.

Tesla’s director of artificial intelligence, Andrej Karpathy, said last week that he is leaving the company after a monthslong sabbatical. The automaker is betting on AI to eventually make its vehicles fully autonomous.

Tesla has also been laying off hundreds of workers after Musk warned last month of an economic downturn.

Reuters reported last week that the company is permanently shutting its office in San Mateo, Calif., and laying off 229 workers. Separately, workers have filed a lawsuit in Texas over layoffs at the company’s battery factory in Nevada.

But there was also good news for the EV leader last week: Panasonic announced it will build a battery factory in Kansas to meet growing demand from its clients, including Tesla. Panasonic is a partner with Tesla in the Giga Nevada battery plant.

Musk, or other Tesla officials, could also provide a product update, especially on the Cybertruck, which is expected sometime next year.

In recent earnings calls, Musk has also teased a new humanoid robot, Optimus, and dedicated autonomous taxis without driver controls.