Tesla is way behind in its Gigafactory construction and has also failed on its promises to the State of Nevada about the number of construction workers and Gigafactory workers it will employ, claimed many reports. But this was not confirmed by the EV maker until recently. When the automaker was recently guiding journalists through the Gigafactory, it confirmed these reports.
Tesla postpones Gigafactory completion
During the tour, a company spokesman stated that the electric car maker has adjusted its schedule and postponed the completion of the entire factory (13.6 million square feet) to sometime in 2020. Previously, it was scheduled for October 2017, says a report from Seeking Alpha.
“Originally, we were going to build the whole building all at once, but that didn’t make a lot of sense. We needed to begin producing faster. We are stepping into it in modular fashion so that as we build we can learn from what we’ve built,” the executive said.
Such explanation does not clear up all doubts. It has been said all along that the Gigafactory is important to the large savings the electric car company is hoping to achieve on the Model 3 (which is promised for 2017). But now we are noticing that the company has stopped the construction after only 1.9 million square feet, which is only 14% of the promised total. What’s interesting to note is that the Gigafactory won’t be finished until three years after the Model 3 is set to go into production.
“Also, could Tesla have chosen a more casual, anonymous, off-hand way to acknowledge something as fundamental as a three-year delay to its much-ballyhooed Gigafactory?” says Montana Skeptic of Seeking Alpha.
Departures before a major event
Another negative for the electric car maker is the recent departures of the key executives. Earlier this month, its vice president of Global Communications, Ricardo Reyes, left. Also there are reports that Michael Zanoni, executive vice president of Finance and Worldwide Controller, was returning to Amazon.
For big companies, these developments may be normal, but they cannot be seen as positive when Tesla is so close to the Model 3 launch. The departures underline that the electric car company is not only competing with Silicon Valley tech companies for engineering and financial talent but also with automobile OEMs and parts manufactures.
Tesla sent ValueWalk the following statement:
Tesla is currently ahead of schedule on both construction and production at the Gigafactory. To date, we have built 1.9 million square feet of manufacturing space and have started production in a portion of the facility while equipment installation continues throughout other areas. As stated previously, we will be building in phases over time and while our original forecast was to begin production in January, 2017, we actually started battery pack production in October, 2015, over a year ahead of schedule.
In terms of hiring, the Gigafactory will employee up to 6,500 people at full production. As we build the Gigafactory, Tesla continues to show an overwhelming commitment to the Nevada workforce. We have gone way beyond the state’s intention that 50% of the Gigafactory workforce be Nevada residents. Nevada residents currently comprise 80% of the construction workforce at the Gigafactory, and each and every contractor at the Gigafactory exceeds the 50% threshold. Additionally, 94% of Tesla employees at the Gigafactory are Nevada residents.
They also noted that readers can check out the following resources to learn more: