Tesla Hits Model 3 Production Goal of 5000 Per Week

Marcus Newton
July 3, 2018

Tesla Inc. (TSLA) rolled out 7,000 cars during the last week of its second quarter, including 5,000 Model 3 electric sedans.

Tesla said today it produced 5,031 Model 3 electric cars in the last seven days of its second quarter, beating its long-elusive production target after several hiccups.

"We did it!", Musk wrote in the email to employees.

If we are to solve the great challenges of the twenty-first century - whether overpopulation, democratic disruption, new antibiotic-resistant diseases, or shortages of resources - it will be thanks to innovators like Musk, who think not just outside the box, but in an entirely different box-free universe. Of course, it shouldn't come as much of a surprise that not everyone is impressed by Tesla's latest achievement.

However, it has been burning through cash to produce the Model 3, and delays have also potentially compromised Tesla's position in the electric auto market as a host of competitors prepare to launch rival vehicles.

Musk has said production of the long-awaited base Model 3, which is supposed to cost $35,000 won't start for another three to four months.

Musk has said he plans to double Model 3 production to 10,000 as it adds a third production line at its Fremont, Calif., manufacturing plant. In previous quarters, the company failed to meet its self-imposed production targets due to an overdependence on factory automation lines and battery production issues. That was responsible for around 20-percent of the Model 3 produced in the final week.

One nugget of the story getting attention is that Tesla's engineers did away with 300 of about 5,000 welds in the Model 3 underbody after concluding they were unnecessary.

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Despite the simpler design and feature set, Tesla has struggled to get production numbers to a sufficient level.

"In the interim, we do not see this production rate as operationally or financially sustainable", said CFRA analyst Efraim Levy.

Field oversaw the troubled rollout of Tesla's Model 3.

The standard battery version of the auto that starts at $35,000 still isn't available in the design studio, so anxious customers can either order a higher-priced Model 3, continue to wait, or cancel their order.

The Model 3, a relatively low-priced model for Tesla, is meant to transform the company from a niche maker of expensive, high-end, vehicles to a major auto manufacturer.

"Model 3 production had already significantly increased over those 6 months, but Tesla had heavily invested into a production capacity of over 5,000 units per week and it needed to get there in order to turn a profit on the vehicle program".

In another bid to push the limits of technology, Tesla at times pulls robots off the line and tests them operating at speeds greater than specified by the supplier, said Charles Mwangi, Tesla's director of body engineering.

Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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