As expected, independent electric vehicle company Tesla Motors saw soaring losses in 2010, according to its earnings report announced Tuesday afternoon. For the year ending Dec. 31, 2010, Tesla lost $154.33 million, which was more than double its losses for the year ending Dec. 31, 2009, at $55.74 million. At the same time, Tesla’s revenues were flat between 2009 to 2010, generating $116.74 million in 2010, compared to $111.94 million for 2009.
The widened losses are certainly expected from the company, which won’t be selling its next-generation electric car, the Model S, until mid-2012, and has been investing in its factory and staff to get the car into production. Tesla has delivered 1,500 first-generation, electric Roadsters to date, according to its earnings report, which cost over $100,000 a pop. But there will be a gap between when Tesla stops selling its current Roadster in 2011, and begins selling its next-generation Roadster, which won’t happen until at least 2013.
Tesla does have other third-party auto deals, including the Toyota RAV-4 EV deal, which Tesla says will generate up to $69 million in development services revenue over the next four to five quarters, and the deal with Daimler to build EV Smart fortwos. Tesla also has a development deal — and equity investment from — Panasonic.
Investors expected as much — if not worse — from Tesla earnings, and shares rose to $23.40 per share. Tesla priced its IPO at $17 per share back in June, its shares started trading at $19 on the morning of its debut, and its stock traded up 40.5 percent on its first day. Tesla’s stock has traded around $20 for months, and a few times hit in the $30s.
For the fourth quarter of 2010, Tesla generated $36.29 million in revenues, which was double its revenues for the fourth quarter of 2009, at $18.59 million. At the same time, Tesla’s net losses on a fourth quarter basis also doubled, and Tesla lost $51.36 million in the fourth quarter of 2010, compared to a loss of $24.24 million for the fourth quarter of 2009.
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