Elon Musk shows pics of first completed Model 3; production of all-electric saloon to reach 20,000 units per month

The first examples of the Tesla Model 3 have rolled off the production line at the firm's Gigafactory in Nevada, US.

Company founder and CEO Elon Musk published two pictures of the first completed car on Twitter. Production for the all-electric four-door will now be ramped up exponentially, with 100 cars produced in August, more than 1500 in September and then 20,000 per month from December.

 

 

The Model 3 has an entry-level price of $35,000 (about £28,000) and has been ordered by around 500,000 customers, which is the maximum output possible at Tesla's new battery-producing Gigafactory. The first models will be given to owners at a handover event on 28 July.

 

 

Production starts as Tesla injects $1 billion (around £800 million) of investment into the company, something CEO Musk has previously said would help the company meet the high demand requirements of its new model.

The manufacturer has raised capital to help production and ease the financial risk associated with the production run, which led to a rise in its share price that was also helped by reports of its future model plans, including the Model Y compact SUV, according to New York financiers.

Tesla Model X road test

Tesla has also said it aimed to deliver a combined total of 47,000 to 50,000 Model S and Model Xs in the first half of this year, but did not give a figure for Model 3 target sales.

It has, however, reaffirmed its pledge to deliver 500,000 vehicles in 2018 and one million in 2020when the Gigafactory is expected to reach full capacity - a sharp rise from the 80,000 delivered in 2016.

Tesla's Gigafactory in numbers

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Comments
33

24 February 2017
By the time Tesla starts producing a million cars a year - projected 2020 - it would have moved the transport world away from the fossil fuels by quite a bit.

3 July 2017
It's peanuts in this industry and makes me wonder why people - hacks and readers - give Elon Musk such an easy ride. Any other motor industry CEO is treated with some degree of scepticism, and if Musk was in any industry except this one he'd be written off online as a tax-avoiding fat-cat scumbag rather than the People's Hero.

3 July 2017
Byzantine wrote:

if Musk was in any industry except this one

You're joking, right? Please tell me you are joking.

4 July 2017
But there are billionaires the public love to hate and billionaires whom they love and forgive for the precisely the same qualities - and whom they believe are infallible and will somehow save the world. None of the reporting of Tesla is anything like the coverage other companies gets. Little scrutiny, almost zero scepticism, just join the queue to say what a hero he is and to accept as truth anything we're old.

7 July 2017
Byzantine wrote:

But there are billionaires the public love to hate and billionaires whom they love and forgive for the precisely the same qualities - and whom they believe are infallible and will somehow save the world. None of the reporting of Tesla is anything like the coverage other companies gets. Little scrutiny, almost zero scepticism, just join the queue to say what a hero he is and to accept as truth anything we're old.

Maybe it's because he's offering a vision that people believe in? (400K deposits) He and VW have turned the auto industry upside down in the last couple of years .. a shake up that's been a long time coming , especially for the German OEMs.

10 July 2017
Exactly. Tesla has been subjected to much scrutiny (Autocar included) but customers and investors have bet on the company in a big way.

3 July 2017
fadyady wrote:

By the time Tesla starts producing a million cars a year - projected 2020 - it would have moved the transport world away from the fossil fuels by quite a bit.

Even if that happens, it's only 1.3% of global passenger car sales, and doesn't even take into account commercial vehicles. Also, much of the power for charging EVs still comes from fossil fuels. Interesting if it happens, but it's not changing much.

4 July 2017
steve-p wrote:

Also, much of the power for charging EVs still comes from fossil fuels. Interesting if it happens, but it's not changing much.

Three things:

1. Fossil fuels account for less than half of the national grid in Britain.

2. The vast majority of fossil fuel on the grid is natural gas, which produces less than half the CO2 of coal.

3. Electric motors are several times more efficient than combustion engines. So even if an EV is running on pure coal (unlikely), there's still a mild CO2 improvement over most petrol/diesel engines. Not to mention the arguably more important factor that the cars don't produce NOx, CO or tailpipe particulates.

As for how much it changes, Tesla's just the one company. 500k or a million cars may not be much, but the question is how much EV uptake it incites in other manufacturers.

4 July 2017
Vertigo wrote:

Three things:

1. Fossil fuels account for less than half of the national grid in Britain.

2. The vast majority of fossil fuel on the grid is natural gas, which produces less than half the CO2 of coal.

3. Electric motors are several times more efficient than combustion engines. So even if an EV is running on pure coal (unlikely), there's still a mild CO2 improvement over most petrol/diesel engines. Not to mention the arguably more important factor that the cars don't produce NOx, CO or tailpipe particulates.

As for how much it changes, Tesla's just the one company. 500k or a million cars may not be much, but the question is how much EV uptake it incites in other manufacturers.

It is a mistake to talk specifically about Britain as though what Britain does or does not do will have any actual bearing on world CO2 levels. How about the energy mix in China, USA, Brazil, India, Russia, etc? Or HVAC systems in US buildings, which consume six times as much energy as the average car? Air transport? Bulk carriers, and container ships? Factories? Home cooking and heating? EVs are not going to save the planet on their own. If that's what you're looking for, better adjust your expectations.

4 July 2017
fadyady wrote:

By the time Tesla starts producing a million cars a year - projected 2020 - it would have moved the transport world away from the fossil fuels by quite a bit.

While their cheapest model sales price is in the 40-45K range. But 35K is merely the beginning price for model 3. My hunch is mainstream car-maker like Nissan/Renault is likely to brake a million electric cars produced and sold each year - ahead of Tezla. Personally I doubt Tezla ever will go that high - - probably staying within executive car sector. Selling at prices competing with Mercedes and BMW, doubt Tezla ever produces model cheaper than equivalent to BMW 3 series. Tezla can very well be a successful make -- while staying roughly at that level. Well, BMW and Mercedes have been at it for a while after all.

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