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International factories for Tesla

Discussion in 'Tesla Motors' started by moollar, Jun 2, 2013.

  1. moollar

    moollar Member

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    Hi Everyone,

    I've been lurking on these forums for some time and feel that Tesla's goal of making mass-market electric vehicles will be one of the most important transportation developments of this century. Once they start producing the Gen III model(s), they're going to have to ramp up production capacity by a significant amount if they are looking to produce 500,000+ vehicles a year. I don't think that they'll be able to do it all from their current factory (even with the conversion of the part that is currently unused), which will necessitate opening more factories.

    I don't want to step on people's toes, seeing as this forum would be dominated by U.S. residents (who would be understandably patriotic about having Tesla factories in America), but what are peoples' thoughts on overseas factories being opened (in addition to other North American factories) to provide for a significant increase in production capacity? I'm sure it would be wonderful in helping to reduce the wait times for people living outside the U.S. receiving their cars and could possibly reduce the cost for international customers. Now that the DOE loan is paid off, I don't see why this couldn't be an option. The profits would still go back to the United States.

    P.S. If anyone from Tesla reads this (and if Tesla is considers doing this), Ford will be closing down their factory in Geelong, Victoria in 2016 (just in time for mass production of Gen III....). If you play it right, you could pick up a car factory and some workers for a bargain! I'm sure the Australian Federal Government would love to have a chat. :wink:

    Cheers.
     
  2. jeff_adams

    jeff_adams Member

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    Tesla is already leasing a factory in Tilburg I've read. Don't know if they have plans to build cars there or just prep cars arriving from the US
     
  3. codesparkle

    codesparkle New Member

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    moollar, as an Australian I'd naturally love to see a Tesla factory in Australia, but unfortunately, it seems a highly unlikely location (although they would actually benefit from the carbon tax).
    The only attractive thing about Australia for Tesla would be its close vicinity to Asia.

    I do expect to see a factory in Europe at some point (but probably not soon).
     
  4. moollar

    moollar Member

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    Hey codesparkle. Love the username. Perhaps you're right and I'm being naive about Australia, but I still think that having some other factories outside of the U.S. to meet international demand and lower the cost for Gen III for international customers would be something that could be looked at by Tesla. As it is, even if Gen III comes out starting at USD$35k, it will probably translate to AUD$60k+ (minimum) for the base model, despite the AUD being close to parity with the USD. At that price, they're unlikely to sell too many here (in comparison to other countries), which would be a major shame and disappointment.

    After hearing the recent Ford announcement, my thought process was that Tesla could take over the factory, coming in as the knight in shining armour (Aussie spelling), gaining instant popularity and following in Australia, which would then translate into an order of magnitude more sales than what would happen otherwise. As you would be aware, 99.99% of the Aussie population has no idea Tesla even exists at this point in time.

    If we had a supercharger network and factory here, I reckon that Australia would be prime place for Tesla to dominate. Australia is a great place for solar installations (due to our geographical location and weather). There are heaps of houses with solar panels now (with more being installed all the time). I think that if you could get the cost of a Gen III to be a little more reasonable than AUD$60k+ (AUD$40k would probably be just about right I reckon), you could convince a significant portion of the population to see the benefits of powering an EV from electricity that they've generated. In turn, I think it would help to accelerate the demand for solar installations at the same time.

    Anyway, food for thought. I'm sure Australia's not alone with the "EVs are too expensive" dilemma.
     
  5. widodh

    widodh Model S R231 EU

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    It's not a real factory in Tilburg (In the Netherlands), but it's for final assembly of the European cars.

    They ship the cars there without batteries and wheels and those get mounted there. They also do final inspection at that location before delivering that cars.
     
  6. codesparkle

    codesparkle New Member

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    Thanks moollar,

    you bring up some good points. One thing we've both neglected to mention is the fact that Australia as a very highly urbanized country (~90% of people live in urban areas) is an excellent candidate for EV adoption.
    However, I have some doubts about the effect of the upcoming election.
    Would still love to see Tesla at least set up some stores displaying the Model S in Melbourne, Sydney and (possibly) Perth — a factory would be beyond awesome (I'd consider applying for a software job with Tesla if it happened).
     
  7. Raffy.Roma

    Raffy.Roma Active Member

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    I think that it would be good to get a real Tesla factory in Europe. Now the delivery time for Model S in Italy is 8 months which is too much in my opinion. With a real Tesla factory in Europe such a delivery time could be shortened. Maybe that a real Tesla factory in Europe would also help to develop faster the Supercharger network in Europe.
     
  8. Objective1

    Objective1 Member

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    At the end of 2012, US customers were being quoted 6-month wait times. In reality, once production and distribution got running smoothly at full pace, the wait was often 60 days. I think something similar will happen in Italy and other parts of the EU once the system gets flowing for the European version, too. Maybe the need to ship the cars will add a month, causing the wait to be 90 days, but it won't be 8 months.
     
  9. Raffy.Roma

    Raffy.Roma Active Member

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    @Objective1

    I think that a real Tesla factory in Europe would be useful anyway if you consider Model X and Gen III production and delivery in Europe.
     
  10. moollar

    moollar Member

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    Good points as well. Australia is VERY urbanised, with a massive chunk along the coastline. In fact Tesla would need FAR fewer supercharger locations to cover a decent chunk of the population of Australia due to this. You basically only need them spread along the A1, plus only a couple of others here and there.

    Yeah, if Tesla's going to make any phone calls, it should include BOTH major political parties - maybe even just the coalition (seeing as they're likely to form the next government).

    Having some showrooms with the Model S on display would at least help Tesla to become a known entity in Australia. As I said earlier, NOBODY I speak to has ever heard of Tesla. This really needs to change. The EV myths need to be smashed in ALL parts of the world, not just North America. I look forward to when I can actually see one in person! Telling someone about it from first-hand experience is always better than just reading something on the 'net.

    I think it's important to note that I'm not expecting factories outside of the U.S. to be producing the Model S - the volume is probably not high enough to justify it. However, come Gen III, they're really going to need a significant increase in capacity to produce a global mass-market vehicle.
     
  11. PeterW

    PeterW Member

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    Perhaps Tesla could make all RHD production of GEN III in Australia.
     
  12. moollar

    moollar Member

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    Sounds like a good idea to me. :biggrin:
     

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