SpaceX CEO and Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) CEO Elon Musk spoke with FOX Business Network’s (FBN) Liz Claman about SpaceX’s contract with NASA saying, “I think it’s a vital next step in SpaceX’s progress.” When asked about Lockheed Martin Corporation (NYSE:LMT) and The Boeing Company (NYSE:BA)’s partnership with Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin, Musk said, “If all your competitors are banding together to attack you, that’s like a good compliment, I think, a very sincere compliment” and that “domestically we have essentially everyone ganging up against us.” Musk also commented on when the first astronaut will be delivered to the International Space Station,  saying, “our internal schedule called for late 2016, but the nature of complex projects is they often take longer than expected. So I would imagine mid-2017 is the most likely point.” Musk went on to talk about the new Gigafactory in Nevada saying he expects it to create “probably some number well in excess of 6,000” direct jobs, and “could be upwards of 10,000” long-term. As for the Tesla Model X, Musk commented that “We’ve basically sold out next year’s production.”

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Elon Musk on the next step for SpaceX, Nevada gigafactory

Elon Musk on SpaceX’s contract with NASA:

“I think it’s a vital next step in SpaceX’s progress. It’s the – you know, it’s about taking astronauts to the space station, eliminating dependency on Russia for transporting U.S. astronauts. But for SpaceX, it’s the next step in the technology we’re developing and it means we’ve got a key anchor tenant in NASA for — as a customer for human transport into orbit.”

Elon Musk on when they expect to deliver the first astronaut to the International Space Station:

“I think no later than 2017… Well, our internal schedule called for late 2016, but the nature of complex projects is they often take longer than expected. So I would imagine mid-2017 is the most likely point.”

Elon Musk on whether he is worried about the competition from Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin banding together with Boeing and Lockheed Martin:

“Well, certainly it’s a good compliment. If all your competitors are banding together to attack you, that’s like a good compliment, I think, a very sincere compliment. So domestically we have essentially everyone ganging up against us, Boeing, Lockheed and Blue Origin, Jeff Bezos’ company. And then on the international front we rattled the Russians and Putin announced several months ago he’s going add $30 billion to the Russian space program in part to compete against SpaceX.”

Elon Musk on how many jobs Nevada Gigafactory will create:

“I expect in terms of direct jobs at the Gigafactory, it’s probably some number well in excess of 6,000. Long-term, it’s probably in terms of direct jobs, I don’t know, could be upwards of 10,000. And then there’s usually — there’s a multiplier effect, because every job at the factory, then you have teachers, doctors, lawyers, plumbers, electricians… A significant knock-on effect, that’s anywhere from three to five times the direct jobs that are created. But one thing I should point out with respect to the Gigafactory that is I think very important is that the tax rates for the Gigafactory over 20 years, so it’s like basically $50 million a year on average for 20 years. This is a factory that will generate revenue on order of $5 billion a year. So we’re talking about like 1 percent. It’s really tiny.”

Elon Musk on SpaceX’s Dragon Version 2 spaceship:

“It’s a significant upgrade in technology in particular and I think an upgrade overall in spaceship technology, because the Dragon 2 will be capable of precise propulsive landing. So it will be able to land anywhere in the world on its thrusters with the accuracy of a helicopter. And so if you think of maybe the earliest generation of technology being parachutes to a water landing, that was sort of Apollo then the second generation being a winged vehicle, then the third generation, which is what we’re doing with Dragon 2 is landing on thrusters with legs, you know, in a precise location. Like if you imagine an alien spaceship landing, that’s how it would land.”

Elon Musk on whether Tesla will be hit the 7,800 number this quarter:

“I think we will see what the final days of the quarter are looking like. I think we are sort of on track to beat something like that…it really depends, if nothing goes wrong. We might be slightly higher, but there are always these logistical issues that you encounter because we are shipping cars all over the world, so we encounter a customs issue in Europe or China or something like that or a train that is carrying our cars breaks down. It’s difficult to account for those extenuating circumstances.”

Elon Musk on what we can expect with the Gigafactory and the number of Tesla’s that he will push off the assembly line:

“Well I feel comfortable that we will be able to achieve at least half a million cars a year in 2020 and maybe we can do a bit sooner than that but that’s what I feel comfortable predicting.”

Elon Musk on the model X preorders:

“We’ve basically sold out next year’s production…It’s somewhere in the, I don’t know, 15,000ish range maybe 20,000ish. It’s difficult to say exactly when.”