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From Electrek: Tesla confirms Model 3 drive unit production at the Gigafactory, announces...

Discussion in 'News from Electrek.co' started by RSSFeed, Jan 18, 2017.

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  1. RSSFeed

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    Tesla confirms Model 3 drive unit production at the Gigafactory, announces $350 million investment & 550 more jobs

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    While we already knew that Tesla was installing drive unit production lines at the Gigafactory, which was originally only supposed to produce battery packs, after the company’s Vice-President of Engineering for Drive Systems got involved in the manufacturing at the plant and posted new jobs for the effort, Tesla officially confirmed last night that Model 3 drive unit production will happen in Nevada and revealed a few new details. more…

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    • MichelT3

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      So, Tesla is really going to produce complete skateboards at the Gigafactory! Good news!
      This added production capacity increases the chances that Tesla will be able to produce more cars than previously has been estimated. So maybe they really will reach 500,000 cars (that's including S and X!) in 2018?
      Would be great!
       
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      • Gilberto Pe-Curto

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        I'ts getting closer to Europe , @MichelT3 !!!
        Maybe sooner than we thought
         
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        • BigBri

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          Seems to be a wise choice and shows the dedication to the Model3. Most companies wouldn't spend that kind've cash to build it elsewhere. They'd delay it to 2020.
           
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          • garsh

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            It sounds like they'll build motors and controllers at the Gigafactory, but creating the frame requires aluminum and stamping machinery. I think they'll leave that part in Fremont.
             
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            • MelindaV

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              It was hinted at in the investor QandA last week too. I went back to listen to the recording (the version in this week's Ride the Lightning by @Ryan is mostly understandable and 100% better than the one posted on Electrek) again and Elon did state when asked if the Model ☰ was on track that the gigafactory's cells/packs, drivetrain electronics and drivetrains would not be an issue for the parts deadline - then like @garsh mentioned, he mentioned the stamping machines (for Fremont installation) and seats being of most concern.
               
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              • MichelT3

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                Well, it's succeed or bust, with the Model 3 for Tesla.
                So, they have no choice but to build fail-proof and ramp up the production as fast as they can.
                 
              • MichelT3

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                No @garsh the substructure of the Model 3 is - as far as we know - made of steel. The bodypanels are aluminium.
                And what's against stamping at the GF, or producing the small number of steel parts for the skateboard elsewhere, and weld them together at the GF?
                If they are already building batterypacks and motors and drivertains at the GF, it requieres just a few parts more to have an easily transportable ready skateboard. On top of which they can further build the car in Fremont.

                In a way it's comparable to the following picture, from the brochure of the Citroën DS in 1961. But without the 'firewall'. ;)
                [​IMG]
                 
              • Dan Detweiler

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                My question would be if it is cheaper to ship drive components from Sparks to Fremont or completed skateboards? Either way whatever is made in the Gigafactory is going to have to be shipped to Fremont for final assembly.

                Dan
                 
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                • garsh

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                  The only thing against it is if Tesla already possesses the equipment for stamping steel/aluminum (whatever the majority of the frame is made from) in Fremont. Stamping machines are HUGE, expensive beasts. It normally takes over a year to buy, ship, and install one, so Tesla would not be able to simply start stamping in Sparks on a whim. Note the size of Tesla's aluminum stamping machine from the people in the foreground:
                  [​IMG]
                  That "elsewhere" would probably be Fremont. At that point, does it make sense to ship a skateboard from Fremont to Sparks, install the motors, controller, and batteries, and then ship it back to Fremont? Or would you ship the motors, controllers, and battery packs from Sparks to Fremont for installation into the skateboard?

                  But, this is all just my opinion. I'm happy to be wrong. :)
                   
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                  • Dan Detweiler

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                    Either way, whatever they decide, if they can make them faster and cheaper, I don't care if they make the skateboards in Kuala Lumpur!

                    Just get me my Model 3!!

                    Dan
                     
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                    • MichelT3

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                      Bottom line will be the outcome of an evaluation of: price, speed, practicality, fails and car output.
                      We don't know. I was just putting up a different thought to transfer even more production time out of Fremont and thus increase the number of cars build.
                       
                    • Badback

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                      The so called 'skateboard' does not exist in the production process. What you see in the Tesla stores are artificial assemblies only for display.
                      Battery packs are linked to the motor and suspension assemblies by the sub-frame, and are the last things to be installed.
                       
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                      • MichelT3

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                        What you see in the Tesla stores are the bottom parts of the chassis of the Model S. Which has nothing to do with the way the Model 3 will be produced - more rationally, aimed at a higher output.
                        In conjecture with the Model 3 there is always talk of the skateboard, on which the car body is built on top. I was expanding on that thought.
                         
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                        • TrevP

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                          Correct, the motors, gearboxes, cells/modules/packs are made in the Gigafactory then shipped to Fremont where they will make the bodies and do final assembly.

                          They're in the process of expanding the Fremont facility but that's for future cars. The Model 3 welding and assembly line are in the process of being installed now. Elon said they're still waiting for the seat situation to get sorted out (what is it with Tesla and seats????) and Schuler to install the massive new body stamping presses.

                          I think they bought a system similar to this one that BMW uses:

                           
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                          • MichelT3

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                            Okay, it seems I over-enthusiastically over-interpreted something that seemed logical to me. :oops::confused:
                            Just battery packs and drivetrains being produced in the Gigafactory. My mistake.
                             
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                            • garsh

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                              We're all just making educated guesses given limited information. It's all good. [​IMG]
                               
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