FREMONT, Calif. (KTVU) - The flag in front of the Tesla electric car plant in Fremont appears to be waving in victory these days.
The factory turned out more than 5,000 electric Model 3 sedans a week in the month of June— a goal Tesla has said is key in its bid to turn a profit in the next two quarters.
"Once they can start moving the cars out of the factory and into customers' garages, the company can begin to make money," said Tim Higgins, a tech and automobile reporter for the Wall Street Journal in San Francisco
Elon Musk, Tesla's chief executive officer, sent a thank you email to all employees Sunday.
"We did it!! What an incredible job by an amazing team. Couldn't be more proud to work with you! I think we just became a real car company."
To help achieve that production level, Musk added a third assembly line inside a tent that is 50 feet-high and hundreds of feet long.
"It's where things such as the windshield is put on and the final trim within the car. It is where the car goes from being a hunk of metal to where it becomes something you can drive out of a parking lot," said Higgins.
The company had been beset by production glitches, making the latest goal a big achievement.
"Snags in the battery factory outside Reno where they were making batteries for the vehicles. The generally assembly line, they wanted it automated.There were some complexities there," said Higgins.
Tesla says it produced 7,000 cars total last week, including two other models.
But can Tesla maintain the rate of production week after week?
"One of the challenges will be the supply community. These parts come from suppliers around the world. Can they keep up the pace Tesla is now making these vehicles?" said Higgins.
Musk says he has set a new goal: To turn out 6,000 Model 3s a week beginning in August.