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Yet the biggest surprise during Wednesday's earnings call was Elon Musk's extending an olive branch to the same analysts the Tesla CEO slammed a quarter ago for asking "boring, bonehead" questions.

The company said it has cut back on capital spending by changing its strategy to produce the Model 3 on existing assembly lines, one in a giant tent, rather than adding all-new lines. The company said it had repeatedly hit weekly production of about 5,000 Model 3s multiple times during July. We believe its because the company has scaled down its level of ambitions for expensive and exotic automation production-aids.

"Very importantly, the Tesla self-driving chip technology that we've been working on for three years is finally coming to fruition", Musk said on Tesla's second-quarter earnings call . That leaves the company with $2.2 billion cash compared with $3.3 billion at the end of 2017.

"From an operating plant standpoint, from [sic] onwards I really want to emphasize our goal is to be profitable and cash flow positive for every quarter going forward", Musk said.

Tesla claimed automotive revenue of approximately $3.4 billion in Q2 2018, and when its energy offerings were lumped in, that figure was closer to $4 billion - beating Thomson Reuters' forecast and setting another company record.

Tesla's second-quarter revenue grew by more than $1 billion as the electric auto maker delivered more Model 3 vehicles, but its net loss still rose dramatically as it ramped up production.

Just as important, Tesla started to see real improvement with Model 3 margins. That angered some deposit-holders, and analysts questioned whether more would drop out because of delays making the cheaper $35,000 version. Tesla recently completed some major cost restructuring and this past June the automaker announced layoffs totaling more than 3,000 jobs.

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It did give new details about its plan to build a factory in Shanghai producing both vehicles and batteries.

Last quarter, Musk mistreated two analysts by calling their queries about the company's cash needs and Model 3 orders "so dry" and "not cool".

Peter Bannon, a former semiconductor architecture engineer at Apple turned leader in Tesla's Autopilot department, spoke during Tesla's quarterly earning call about the new hardware in the company's portfolio, Autopilot v3. Tesla shares fell after the incident, and Musk later apologized.

On Wednesday, Musk took responsibility for his behavior.

Tesla's second-quarter losses of $743 million were lower than analysts' estimates, of about $900 million.

Tesla stock surged as much 12 per cent in after-hours trading and were up 9.1 per cent at $US328.15 as of 7:28 pm in NY.