San Francisco — Tesla said on Thursday it would not be profitable in the first quarter, as it offered — for the first time — a $35,000 version of its Model 3 sedan and said its global sales would now be online only, steps designed to increase demand and cut overhead costs for the electric vehicle maker. CEO Elon Musk's warning on profit during a conference call with members of the media, which did not include Reuters, contrasted with Tesla's statement in February that it was expecting a "very small" net profit in the first quarter. Shares of Tesla fell 3.4% after hours. Investors have voiced concern about whether Tesla would be able to maintain profit margins through cost cutting — such as recent layoffs — as it reduces prices of its newest vehicle. Still, the price drop could quell concerns from some analysts that demand for the higher-priced versions of the Model 3 was beginning to dry up in the United States, especially after a federal tax credit was cut in half this year. "Tesla...

BL Premium

This article is reserved for our subscribers.

A subscription helps you enjoy the best of our business content every day along with benefits such as articles from our international business news partners; ProfileData financial data; and digital access to the Sunday Times and Sunday Times Daily.

Already subscribed? Simply sign in below.

Questions or problems? Email or call 0860 52 52 00. Got a subscription voucher? Redeem it now