Tesla misses 2016 delivery target by about 4,000 units, but builds more than ever

Total 2016 deliveries were 76,230.

Once you put a specific number on your target, it gets locked in. So, when Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced early last year that he expected his company to deliver 80,000 vehicles in 2016, the world was given a gauge to hold him to. Even though the target was still a thing as late as August and despite a big push to increase production and demand, Tesla ended up missing the mark.

But not by much. And, in a year as topsy-turvy as 2016 was, Tesla's final delivery figure for the year of 76,230 should be seen as a success, especially when compared to the 50,580 EVs Tesla delivered in 2015. We get there with fourth-quarter production figures of 24,882 for a total of 83,922 vehicles in all of 2016, a 64 percent increase from 2015. Tesla delivered about 22,200 of those vehicles last quarter (12,700 Model S and 9,500 Model X vehicles).

As for what caused the 80k target to slip them by, Tesla says that Autopilot hardware updates were to blame. "Because of short-term production challenges starting at the end of October and lasting through early December from the transition to new Autopilot hardware, Q4 vehicle production was weighted more heavily towards the end of the quarter than we had originally planned. We were ultimately able to recover and hit our production goal, but the delay in production resulted in challenges that impacted quarterly deliveries, including, among other things, cars missing shipping cutoffs for Europe and Asia." All of these delays resulted in about 6,450 Tesla EVs being in transit to customers now, which will be counted in the first quarter of 2017.

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