Tesla Motors confounded its critics last week, pulling forward by two years its ambitious production plan to build 500k cars a year.
The announcement, made at the same time as Tesla revealed a quarterly loss of $282m, was also accompanied by the departure of its head of production Greg Reichow and head of manufacturing John Ensign.
In the world of Tesla, it was just an average week in which the highs and lows of the automotive industry are compressed into a few days of hectic business.
Typically, Tesla’s announcement of its enormous production hike, based around the mindboggling 400k unit future order bank for the $35k Model 3, was a surprise to most industry observers.
Although Tesla’s press release on the subject made it all sound very matter of fact. "Increasing production fivefold over the next two years will be challenging and will likely require some additional capital, but this is our goal and we will be working hard to achieve it," company CEO, Elon Musk said nonchalantly.
It is difficult to think of an auto industry production ramp-up as rapid as this. Although Cardiff Business School professor Paul Niewenhuis reckons it can be done "especially with money in the bank".