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Tesla raises credit lines as Model 3 production approaches

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Tesla increased its borrowing cap by $800 million as it moves into Model 3 production next month.

The Palo Alto based automaker increased its credit line with Deutsche Bank by $625 million, raising its total revolving line with the bank to $1.825 billion, according to a federal filing on Friday. It also amended an agreement to borrow an additional $175 million from the German bank.

Tesla expects to start producing the new, lower-cost Model 3 in July. The new model’s manufacturing brings additional costs, including changes and expansions to the company’s Fremont factory. The company has so far failed to turn an annual profit during its expansion, adding products, building factories and acquiring companies.

Baird Equity Research analysts remain bullish on the company after a meeting last week with management. Tesla told the analysts it was on track to have the capacity to produce 250,000 vehicles by the end of the year. The company manufactured about 84,000 Model S and Model X vehicles last year.

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The much-anticipated Model 3, a smaller, cheaper sedan than the luxury Model S, drew nearly 400,000 reservations in the weeks following its unveiling last March. The company estimates new orders for the $35,000 electric vehicle will be delivered no sooner than mid-2018.

Tesla fans continue to spot prototypes of the Model 3 in the Bay Area and beyond. A keen-eyed EV enthusiast with the Reddit handle You You Xue spotted a new vehicle in San Mateo last week.

A series of photographs show the interior and exterior of a white sedan, including a shot the new sedan charging alongside a pair of Model S vehicles.

Other fans caught the car coming through customs in New Zealand. Initial deliveries will be focused on the U.S. market, however.

The coming release has boosted Tesla’s stock price, pushing it to record highs this year. It ended last week at $382 per share, giving the company a market value topping $62 billion and worth more than Ford and GM.

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Photo: Tesla Motors unveils the new Model 3 sedan at the company’s design studio in Hawthorne, Calif., Thursday, March 31, 2016. (Justin Pritchard/Associated Press) 

Tags: elon musk, Model 3, tesla

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