Tesla achieves 5.000 Model 3 production target by skin of its teeth
On July 1st at 5 a.m. Pacific Time the last of 5.000 Model 3 cars rolled off the assembly line at the Tesla factory in Fremont (CA). This way Elon Musk proved the target set of 5.000 cars per week by the end of the second quarter can be achieved, except for a few hours short. Meanwhile the former Model 3 production chief, Doug Field, left the company once and for all.
At the same time the company built 2.000 Tesla S and Tesla X models on top of the 5.000 Model 3s, making Musk tweet triumphantly ‘7.000 cars in seven days’ on Sunday.
6.000 cars by August
Whether Tesla can keep up with that pace is yet to be shown, but Musk himself seems quite optimistic – as usual – targeting ‘hopefully at 6.000 Model 3s a week next month’, according to an internal email the Reuters press agency could lay hands on.
In April 2018 Elon Musk, founder and CEO of Tesla, had taken control over the production in Fremont himself to make sure production was back on track as soon as possible. Doug Field, senior vice-president, responsible for engineering and production, was sent on a sabbatical leave for indefinite time. The former Apple engineer now left the company for good after five years, a Tesla spokesman confirmed on Monday.
Too much automation
Musk took the helm himself at the factory in Fremont and initiated a series of changes to get production on track. In an interview with CBS This Morning Musk admitted trying to put in too much automation was a mistake and the system of complex conveyor belts had to be replaced.
Another remarkable intervention was adding a giant tent permanently next to the factory to house another assembly line for the more advanced versions of the Model 3. The ones that have to help making the brand profitable first before rolling out massively the cheapest versions at 35.000 dollar.
Delivered with 6 months delay
In the same interview on CBS This Morning Musk promised that everyone of the more than 400.000 people who had pre-ordered a Model 3 and paid 1.000 dollar in advance, would get their car delivered, but some six months later than envisioned first.