“Tesla employees contend to design some-more Model 3 delays,” review a title from CNBC yesterday. CNBC’s Lora Kolodny reported that despite Tesla’s ambitions to run a rarely programmed prolongation process, Tesla has been being forced to perform some battery-assembly stairs in its Nevada Gigafactory by hand, borrowing scores of employees from its battery partner, Panasonic, to do it.
It sounds like a big headache for the Palo Alto carmaker until you notice one pivotal detail: the essay is articulate about the state of Tesla’s prolongation operation “as recently as mid-December.”
In December, Tesla and Panasonic workers were manually convention bandoliers, rows of lithium-ion cells glued on possibly side of a cooling tube. It’s a tricky charge to finish by hand, so the primer public led to a lot of errors and waste.
But some-more recently, Kolodny acknowledges, Tesla has begun to ramp up production.
“Once the machines in the bureau were means to holder out bandoliers as quick or faster than the primer laborers, Tesla began promulgation Panasonic workers back to their employer,” Kolodny reports, citing unknown sources at the factory. “Today, Tesla is circuitous down primer public as much as probable at the Gigafactory.”
In other words, this seems to be a story of Tesla regulating a prolongation bottleneck and ramping up production—even nonetheless the title gives the conflicting impression.
To be fair, one operative told CNBC that a miss of gangling ability leads to visit shutdowns: “There’s no redundancy, so when one thing goes wrong, all shuts down.” But programmed prolongation with visit shutdowns is better than primer assembly. And this is presumably a problem Tesla can fix in the coming months.
It’s critical to remember the broader context here. Tesla is scandalous for environment desirous deadlines for itself and then unwell to hit them.
For example, in 2009, Tesla was formulation to ship the Model S in 2011, but the start of prolongation wound up slipping to mid-2012. Tesla then set a idea to furnish 5,000 vehicles during that first calendar year, but only managed to furnish 3,100.
But Tesla eventually did figure out how to furnish the Model S in poignant volume, and the automobile became Tesla’s biggest success story.
Production of the Model 3 has gotten off to an even slower start than the Model S. The company only managed to furnish about 1,800 Model 3s in the third and fourth buliding of 2017. But Tesla has poignant financial resources. It can means a few months’ check if it’s eventually means to ideal its prolongation process.
And the CNBC report suggests that Tesla has done poignant swell in that instruction over the last month. Production processes that had been achieved manually in Dec are apropos increasingly automated.
Tesla still has a prolonged way to go to make the 400,000 Model 3′s that business have already ordered—not to discuss making them low adequate to spin a profit. But Elon Musk has no necessity of diligence and determination. We’re not going to count him out yet.