Tesla Tells Investors A Plan for Four More Gigafactories Will Be Released

Tesla expects demand for electric vehicle batteries will be strong enough to add four more Gigafactories beyond its current Nevada plant.

In a note to investors Wednesday with its quarterly financial report, the company said it will lay out those plans by the end of the year.

As for “Gigactory 2,” that plant will be placed at SolarCity’s facility in Buffalo, N.Y., which Tesla acquired through the acquisition of the solar power company.

Tesla has been preparing that Buffalo facility to open a solar cell and modular manufacturing division with Panasonic Corp. Production is scheduled to being there this summer, with about 1,400 workers expected to eventually be employed in the solar plant.

There will be much interest in where the other three new Gigafactories will be established. Tesla CEO Elon Musk has tweeted and made media comments about the possibility of opening shop in the United Kingdom or elsewhere in Europe, and in India. There’s also been speculation that Tesla will add battery production to its vehicle factory in China.

The next Gigafactories will also likely be considered for jobs beyond lithium-ion battery packs used in Tesla vehicles. In January, the company announced it will be adding electric motor and gearbox production to the Gigafactory in Nevada. There’s also Powerwall energy storage batteries, which Tesla has added to the Nevada factory.

Tesla and partner-company Panasonic announced last month that Gigafactory is up and running. The factory, located near Reno, is about one third complete. About 6,500 people are expected to be working there by year’s end with capacity for a total of 10,000 workers at that plant to be met by 2020.

SEE ALSO:  Tesla Hiring More Gigafactory Employees To Build Model 3 Motors and Components

During its fourth quarter earnings report, the company stated that $522 million had been spent during that time on capital expenditures that included the Gigafactory build-out.

Tesla said it will be investing $2 billion to $2.5 billion to ramp up its factory for Model 3 production.


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Tesla Reports Better Financials and Model 3 Due In July

Tesla shaved down losses and surpassed revenue estimates in Q4, and told investors Model 3 production will start in July.

On a conference call yesterday, CEO Elon Musk told analysts that the company is “on track” to start limited production then, with a goal of 5,000 Model 3s produced per week in the fourth quarter and 10,000 a week next year.

The pressure is on for Tesla to keep its word on scaling up to high-volume production as focus changes from the Model S and Model X luxury vehicles to the Model 3 with a promised $35,000 starting price.

Earnings and revenue came ahead of analysts’ projections and Tesla has yet to go from red to black, but the loss margin narrowed.

Tesla reported losing $121.3 million on an unadjusted basis, compared to a loss of $320.4 million last year. On an adjusted basis, the automaker lost $106.5 million for the quarter, versus $264.8 million during that period last year.

Quarterly revenue of $2.18 billion was slightly more than what analysts estimated.

Tesla’s quarterly report impressed investors enough to drive stock up 1.5 percent to $266.67 in after hours trading. That softened the day after, with Tesla shares trading around $260 through the morning.

Musk answered concerns that President Donald Trump’s administration may eliminate federal purchase incentives or subsidies for electric cars.

“It would be fine to get rid of incentives and subsidies, but that should be uniformly applied to all industries,” Musk said.

Tesla will be able to weather the demise of incentives and subsidies much better than other automakers, he said.

SEE ALSO:  Tesla Briefly Shutting Down Fremont Plant To Prepare For July Model 3 Production

Investors have been concerned Tesla will be tapped in its cash flow and profits getting ready to mass produce the Model 3; and with all the costs related to the SolarCity merger, Tesla Energy, autonomous vehicles, and opening more Gigafactories.

The company said it will be investing $2 billion to $2.5 billion to ramp up its factory for Model 3 production.

The company does expect Model S and Model X sales to do well this year. Projected delivery of 47,000 to 50,000 of these vehicles combined through June would mean sales will jump about 61 percent over the first half of last year.

The company also mentioned during the conference call that chief financial officer Jason Wheeler is leaving. He’ll be replaced by former Tesla CFO Deepak Ahura.

USA Today

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