Tesla reported last quarter its first profit, beating analysts’ estimates, as Model S sales surpassed those of GM’s Chevrolet Volt.

During the first quarter, Tesla’s net income reached $11.2 million, compared with a loss of $89.9 million in 2012. From January to March Tesla sold 4,900 Model S sedans, surpassing the previous forecast of 4,500 units. The company expects full-year deliveries for the Model S to hit 21,000 units, up from the previous goal of 20,000 units.

“I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t somewhat surprising to see they’ve been able to turn a profit so quickly” on the Model S, Alec Gutierrez, an industry analyst for Kelley Blue Book, said in a phone interview. “It has the right stuff to be a strong player in the industry.”

This profit is a milestone for the automaker which has been in the middle of a debate regarding the future of EVs. Tesla has been relying on the Model S to boost sales and bring the company’s first profit. The revenue increased from $30.2 million in 2012 to $561.8 million in the first quarter and the loss from operations reached $5.58 million, down from $88.8 million last year.

Source: Bloomberg


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