TMC is an independent, primarily volunteer organization that relies on ad revenue to cover its operating costs. Please consider whitelisting TMC on your ad blocker or making a Paypal contribution here: paypal.me/SupportTMC

Foxconn gearing up for Model E with new plant in the US?

Discussion in 'TSLA Investor Discussions' started by jkeyser14, Feb 14, 2014.

  1. Robert.Boston

    Robert.Boston Model S VIN P01536

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2011
    Messages:
    7,842
    Location:
    Portland, Maine, USA
    Curious that the article explicitly says "17-inch screens". I've been assuming that the Model E will have slightly smaller screens (to stay in proportion with the rest of the vehicle, and to reduce costs).
     
  2. Discoducky

    Discoducky Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2011
    Messages:
    2,883
    Location:
    Seattle
    Moving to another screen size comes with more overhead than cost savings. Resizing UI, testing and qualifications. Might make more business sense to stay with 17".
     
  3. EarlyAdopter

    EarlyAdopter Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2012
    Messages:
    2,494
    Location:
    Redmond, WA
    Reducing the screen and digitizer down to say 14" would save at most $200 per car. Not worth the costs of having to maintain two UI development branches I'd think.
     
  4. bonaire

    bonaire Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2013
    Messages:
    1,498
    Location:
    USA
  5. markb1

    markb1 Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2012
    Messages:
    2,318
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    Um... the article doesn't say anything about Model E.
     
  6. stevezzzz

    stevezzzz R;SigS;P85D;SigX

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2009
    Messages:
    6,062
    Location:
    Colorado
    Noted, but if the Model E is truly going to be produced in volume, $200 per car is a huge win in manufacturing. The big auto manufacturers routinely fight for part cost reductions measured in nickels and dimes.
     
  7. TD1

    TD1 Member

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2012
    Messages:
    339
    Location:
    D
    there is no way the manufacturing price is 200$ higher for a 17" vs a 14"/15" I would guess its $10-$20

    Able-HD: Portable HD Monitor for Laptop Kickstarter

    retail price of 135$ for the whole panel + electronics.
    So if a manufacturer like Tesla orders 40k-300k Panels they sure get a better deal on them. I guess around 30-50$ per panel (not including electronics and other parts that Foxcon might produce)
    Its a sure bet that Model E won't have a smaller screen, at least not for economic reasons.
     
  8. EarlyAdopter

    EarlyAdopter Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2012
    Messages:
    2,494
    Location:
    Redmond, WA
    I had typed "at most $100" originally but tweaked it up a notch not knowing what a 17" vs 14" digitizer runs for. The capitive touch digitizers often are considerably more expensive than the LCD panel.

    But yeah, I suspect you're right and the difference is in the low double digits. With large enough volume of 17" touchscreens, Tesla+Foxconn could probably drive that down to $0.
     
  9. tom66

    tom66 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2013
    Messages:
    622
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    Tesla say they tapped into the "Apple supply chain" for the panel (it's on the introducing Model S Beta: Touchscreen video, for those interested)

    This means one of four major suppliers likely to produce the panel:
    - LG Display
    - Sharp LCD
    - Samsung
    - AU Optronics
    - Chi-Mei Optoelectronics

    It's most likely to be LG or Sharp. Apple buy their Retina and large screen products from LG almost exclusively in recent years, and their smaller products from Sharp. They are moving away from Samsung panels.

    Sharp probably makes the 12.3" dashboard cluster (1280x400 pixels) because they're the only manufacturer out there with a panel at that resolution, intended specifically for dashboard units.

    A 17 inch, 1920x1080 panel can be sourced for under $90.

    Chi-Mei and LG both partner with Foxconn to assemble the glass (expensive part) with the drivers (ribbon, timing controller, gate drive, backlight) for certain smaller panels.

    So Tesla instead of buying assembled modules (LC Glass + TCP Ribbon + T-Con + Backlight) from Korea/China, will be buying them from a US factory -- great for US -- though the glass will still be coming from Korea as that takes factories $1bn+ to set up.

    As for development branches, as long as they retain the 1920x1080 resolution (it's that or drop to an oddball resolution like 1365x768 or 1440x900) they won't have to change a thing. It's quite possible they could drop down to 15.6". That panel size is a lot more common as it's used on some laptops, so cost can be lower.

    Personally, since Model E is likely to be smaller, it would be nicer to have a smaller touchscreen; it'd allow for more interior space and freedom to style the dash area. Plus, the car has to be cheaper. Which means it must look lesser, because Model S will still be sold, and they do not want to steal potential sales away from Model S.
     
  10. SwedishAdvocate

    SwedishAdvocate Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2012
    Messages:
    1,648
    Location:
    Sweden, Earth
    #11 SwedishAdvocate, Feb 15, 2014
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2014
    1. Is that accurate? Same resolution, with the exact same GUI will make everything physically smaller. Fonts for instance may become difficult to read.

    2. As I understand it, it (the car) will be smaller. Elon has said so himself.

    3. Why wouldn’t they? Tesla’s ‘mission statement’ is about sustainable transport. The more the E cannibalizes the S (or the X) the better from a sustainable transport point of view… And that benefits each and everyone at Tesla, as well as all their friends and family.
     
  11. ItsNotAboutTheMoney

    ItsNotAboutTheMoney Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2012
    Messages:
    4,491
    Location:
    Maine
    Right, keep the stuff you've already worked with that keeps getting cheaper. You just keeo upgrading the premium cars first with the cool stuff.
     
  12. tom66

    tom66 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2013
    Messages:
    622
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    1. You can look at an Android smartphone vs tablet; there are some design changes like font sizes and items per page, but in general, an interface can work well at different screen sizes, not saying they won't make any changes, but I'd bet any such changes would be limited to font sizes etc. which can be relatively simple to change. They use Qt toolkit, which is highly responsive to updates.

    2. Yes but will have to wait for the final design to be sure, and also whether they will use Gen-III in bigger cars like pick ups (maybe...)

    3. Yes, they have a mission statement, but fundamentally, Tesla is out there to become a big player. They wouldn't be building such a big supercharger network only to not use it in 10 years time. Tesla has a market cap about 1/2 of GM, which is crazy high. If Model E is a success -- and I have little doubt it will be -- then Tesla will become a serious player. And, in a marketplace as competitive as cars, you don't try to undercut your own product. You need people who plunk down another $30k-$40k more to feel like they're getting more.
     
  13. SwedishAdvocate

    SwedishAdvocate Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2012
    Messages:
    1,648
    Location:
    Sweden, Earth
    Apologies for continuing off topic. I searched for a better thread to continue in, but couldn’t find one… If a mod wants to move this elsewhere I totally understand.



    A:

    B: Why not? If you’re afraid of cannibalizing your own product, then you always risk that somebody else will do the cannibalizing. As I understand it Apple under Jobs for instance, was always completely ruthless about in company cannibalizing for just this reason.

    As long as people buy a Tesla, does it really matter if it’s an S, X or E?

    C: If you plunk down more, you will get more. A fully loaded Model E with the biggest battery, the most powerful AWD powertrain and all the available bells and whistles will cost as much (and perhaps even more) as a comparable Merc/Bimmer/Audi.

    And if you buy an S or an X, you’ll also get more in the sense that you’ll get a bigger car…
     
  14. tom66

    tom66 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2013
    Messages:
    622
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    I like Elon - I really consider him a visionary a lot like Jobs but with an actual engineering background - but please, let's not also pretend that starting Tesla was a massive risk, he almost bankrupted himself, and I think he kind of deserves a decent pay back from it. Tesla will go for profitability. A very nice side effect is moving us towards EVs much quicker than the existing corporations (without Tesla I'd wager we'd wait 20 to 30 years for a 200 mile GM car, and right now, they're talking about one.) Tesla isn't a 501c3 non profit... they're out there to make money for investors.

    Anyway, I truly have no idea if Tesla will use a smaller screen, but to me, it makes sense, for a smaller car, the 17 inch screen already dominates the Model S, inside a smaller Model E cabin, it's going to look a little over the top.
     
  15. rtz

    rtz Member

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2013
    Messages:
    142
    Location:
    United States
    That would be epic if Foxconn diversified and starts building Teslas like they do iPhones. I can totally see them building a plant in China.
     
  16. TD1

    TD1 Member

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2012
    Messages:
    339
    Location:
    D

Share This Page