Tesla has surprisingly good second-quarter profit image

Electric-car making is not yet the cash cow automakers expected so it’s no wonder Wall Street was surprised on Wednesday when Tesla Motors Inc posted good earnings.

With good production and sales for the new Model S sedan, the best-selling U.S. electric car despite a starting price of more than $70,000 – the company’s stock price has more than quadrupled in the past year.

On Wednesday, Tesla announced it sold 10,500 Model S sedans in the first six months and expects to reach an annualized rate of 40,000 by late 2014, as it expands sales to Europe and Asia.

The American company reported a second-quarter non-GAAP profit of 20 cents a share versus an expected non-GAAP loss of 17 cents. In after-hours trade, the stock hit a high of $153 a share, up from its Wednesday close at $134.

Tesla is planning on ramping up production but also its line-up, with the already announced crossover model, the Model X, becoming available late next year and slotted for volume production in early 2015. Things will not stop there, as Tesla founder and chief executive Elon Musk, in an earnings call with analysts, said a third model, a compact electric sedan known internally as Gen 3 will become available in 2016 and will have a 200 mile (320 km) range.