Tesla will be profitable by September, says Gene Munster

  • Loup Ventures' Gene Munsters, who called the Tesla production beat, predicts the embattled automaker will be profitable by September.
  • CEO Elon Musk announced Tesla aims to produce 6,000 Model 3s per week by August, but Munster says September is a safer bet.

Loup Ventures' Gene Munster predicts the embattled automaker will be profitable by September.

CEO Elon Musk announced Tesla aims to produce 6,000 Model 3s per week by August, but Munster says September is a safer bet.

"This 5,000 production number was the first time in about nine months he's gotten one right. I think it's safe to always dial back what he's saying, that's why we think [Tesla's] going to meet the production number by the end of the September quarter," Munster said on CNBC's "Fast Money."

"If they hit that number, it's going to equate to 48,000 model 3s produced in the September quarter. That should get them to profitability, slightly profitable," Munster said. "It's not going to be wildly profitable in September, I just want to warn everyone, but... it moves them in the right direction."

After repeatedly pushing back targets, Tesla vowed in January to build 5,000 Model 3s per week before the close of the second quarter to demonstrate it could mass produce the battery-powered sedan. Tesla finally met its goal in the final week of the quarter, with the final car rolling off the assembly line on Sunday morning.

Despite Tesla's weekend production beat, the stock ended down more than 2 percent on Monday, which Munster said initially surprised him.

"The bears have their case to say that even though that 5,000 number was pretty, they had to throw everything at it to get there — the reality is they haven't ramped," Munster said.

Tesla's future as a mass-market automaker hinges on efficient, automated production of the mid-priced Model 3. Production of the Model 3 has been plagued by a number of issues, including excessive automation in factories and battery issues. Delays may have already compromised Tesla's monopoly on the mid-priced electric vehicle, as competitors prepare to launch rival models.