Behind the Wheel with Phil Lebeau

Expectations accelerate for Tesla Q3 earnings

A row of new Tesla superchargers outside the company's factory in Fremont, Calif.
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As Tesla shares soared Monday, so did chatter of the electric car company reporting third-quarter earnings that might top initial estimates.

Officially, Tesla is expected to earn $0.11/share on $553 million in sales according to Thomson One consensus of analysts. Unofficially, there are several other factors that explain the bullish outlook many have developed about Tesla's third-quarter operations.

Depending on which analyst you follow, the estimates for third-quarter deliveries go from "meeting guidance" to "well above guidance". After reporting second-quarter earnings, Tesla said that it expects to sell 5,000 Model S in the third quarter .

Given Tesla exceeded that number in the second quarter -- it reported 5,150 sales - few believe Tesla will report just 5,000 deliveries for the third quarter.

(Read more: Tesla Model S fire tests support of investors)

In early October, Brian Johnson with Barclays raised his estimate for third-quarter deliveries to 5,820.

Others on Wall Street are in the same ballpark, but given the fact Tesla is now producing 500 Model S vehicles each week -- that's 26,000 annually or 6,500 per quarter -- there are some asking if third-quarter Model S deliveries will top 6,000 or 6,100.

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When Tesla started Model S sales in Europe a couple of months ago, the expectation was for a modest boost to the overall demand of the vehicle. Then, on October 1st, Wedbush Securities put out a research note saying, "Sales into Europe appear to be gaining significant traction."

The analyst, Craig Irwin, offered no other numbers to back his suggestion, but the message alone has been enough to stir investor interest.

Meanwhile, it appears the market with the greatest interest in the Model S is Norway, where Tesla has delivered 801 vehicles.

In September, the Model S was the best-selling car in Norway. Not the best-selling electric car, but the best-selling car overall. Granted Norway is a comparatively small auto market and there are reports the Model S sales have not been as strong in Germany, the largest auto market in Europe.

(Read more: Why I upgraded Tesla stock: Wedbush analyst)

Still, watch what Tesla says about demand in Europe.

—By CNBC's Phil LeBeau. Follow him on Twitter @LeBeauCarNews.

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