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Model X Timeline - From Prototype to Production

Discussion in 'Model X: Ordering, Production, Delivery' started by bonnie, Mar 7, 2013.

  1. AlMc

    AlMc 'Senior Moments' member

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    I know it is off topic, forgive me mods.....but just how long ago did you have to put down the 40K for Sig#2 (yes..I am jealous :wink:)
     
  2. bonnie

    bonnie Oil is for sissies.

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    I'll make it little and the mods for this area won't notice. The Model X launch party was in February 2012. I brought my checkbook.

    Nigel/Robert - if you throw these posts over to Model X, I'll put them in the right spot :).
     
  3. DaveT

    DaveT Searcher of green pastures

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    I agree and hope for surprise. A moved out production date for Model X would be nice.

    I think we're still waiting for Model X beta though.
     
  4. DaveT

    DaveT Searcher of green pastures

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    According this this article (http://wheels.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/03/12/tesla-model-x-production-wont-start-until-late-2014/?_r=0) it appears that we've only seen the Model X prototype so far (and not even the Alpha version yet). The stages as far as I've heard them are prototype, alpha, beta, release candidate, and then production.
     
  5. Theshadows

    Theshadows Active Member

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    Do they really have to release the intermediary vehicles though? Nothing about Tesla is conventional to the automotive market. Can't they just do all that testing in house and under cover? They could make their prototypes and have them tested at independent labs that are under a strict NDA.
     
  6. DaveT

    DaveT Searcher of green pastures

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    I think it's to their advantage to be fairly open with all the intermediary vehicles. They did this with the Model S, and the reasoning was to elicit more feedback, thus improving the final vehicle. I remember reading an article that Elon purposely tried to be as open as possible with the Model S development stages to get as much feedback as possible.
     
  7. vfx

    vfx Well-Known Member

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    Tesla skips the prototype stage. Their first showings actually work (though I realize an EV can be cobbled together into a working prototype in ways a ICE can't). They drive them with passengers through cones at a good clip. They don't follow convention.
     
  8. Theshadows

    Theshadows Active Member

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    IMO the platform of the model S looks like it could easily be identical, just with a different "top" half put on, kinda like GM was showing with the hywire a few years ago. So the only kinks they have to work out would be in the upper portion of the vehicle, the low centre of gravity, power train, and the brains of the car would be virtually identical. They have a lower half of the car that they know works. Put the top on, release that, then the awd version (which may already be ready for production) and you have a full line of Model X ready to roll off the factory floor with minimal retooling of the stamping system.

    And this applies to the short term stock movements because there could be huge Model X announcements that will really impact the stock price. Especially if this info were to be "dropped" during the Q3 conference call.
     
  9. DaveT

    DaveT Searcher of green pastures

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    Tesla doesn't skip the prototype stage. Actually they've modeled their car development stages based off of silicon valley software stages. According to the article I just linked to, Tesla is saying their still in the Model X design prototype stage. A prototype though can be a fully functioning vehicle (ie., take people in rides in it) but a lot of the design can change. By Alpha stage, most everything of the design will be finalized with very minor changes. And by Beta, it's pretty much what's going to go into production but they're testing everything.
     
  10. fengshui

    fengshui Member

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    They don't have to release them, but Elon will receive stock grants as each of those intermediary vehicles are finalized. That would have to disclosed in an SEC filing, I expect.
     
  11. gg_got_a_tesla

    gg_got_a_tesla Model S: VIN 65513, Model 3: VIN 1913

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    Model S timeline:

    Proto: March 2009
    Alpha: Feb 2011
    Beta: Oct 2011
    Prod: June 2012

    Working back from an early 2015 Prod date for the Model X, my guesses are:

    Prod: Jan 2015
    Beta: Aug 2014
    Alpha: Jan 2014
    Proto: Feb 2012
     
  12. bonnie

    bonnie Oil is for sissies.

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    I'd accelerate much of that, based on the fact that much of the proven S platform is being used and the factory is up and running.
     
  13. AlMc

    AlMc 'Senior Moments' member

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    I agree. I predict Bonnie gets her X in Sept 2014...and hopefully that means mine will be delivered sometime in Oct/Nov.
     
  14. MikeL

    MikeL some guy

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    #114 MikeL, Sep 12, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2013
    Agree w your post, but want to point out that, to me, one of the most impressive (& imposing) things about the Tesla factory tour was the scale of the stamping operation. Stack after stack of huge iron dies in long rows as far as I could see into the room where they are all standing by for their turn in the presses, for just one model of car. Obviously Tesla can handle the task, but as they have to make ALL the body parts, I wouldn't call it 'minimal'. ML

    AIMc - you're on record, I like it! Maybe I'll get mine for some snowy roads one whole winter earlier than I've been expecting.
     
  15. gg_got_a_tesla

    gg_got_a_tesla Model S: VIN 65513, Model 3: VIN 1913

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    I'd counter that with "but, the Model S is selling like hotcakes and Tesla can't make enough of them fast enough" :)
     
  16. Theshadows

    Theshadows Active Member

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    I've been wondering this myself. Can they, or the better question is would they pull off making the Model X on the same line?

    From what I know of lean manufacturing in think I would build the Model X on a half new line. What I mean by that is make the "base" of the MX on the MS line, then have another line that is programmed and fitted to handle the MX body panels.

    Disclsimer: my extent of the factory tour has been some wonderful and informative YouTube videos.
     
  17. MikeL

    MikeL some guy

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    After the robots put the metal bits together and it returns from the mysterious, far off paint shop - a surprisingly large amount of the rest of the assembly was done "by hand", or so it appeared. This is when each vehicle rides around on its own red cart that follows the magnetic stripe on the floor. Point is your "half line" approach would need to begin at the robots (after the different stamps to begin with) but they could be programmed to do their X welds for Xs and S welds for Ss. Then paint. Then, it would seem, on the cart trip there would be some, but not many, common parts so that's when the lines would diverge. Glad I don't have to figure it out.
     
  18. Theshadows

    Theshadows Active Member

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    MIGHT thought about that too but the robots would have to be slowed to test the new MX programming which is something I don't think Tesla wants to do right now. Test the MX programs on a new line of robots so the MS line can still be run at full speed and it only spits out one rear wheel drive chassis that goes to the MX line once a day or so at first so they can tweak the new line. Then after 6 months or a year they could be ramped up to full speed on the MX line.
     
  19. MikeL

    MikeL some guy

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    One of the very cool things about those robots is that they CAN be programmed do do many different things, but as you say, those particular ones probably WON'T be because if they are running at capacity, for every X they assembled, they would not be assembling an S. :frown: oh well, they should get more anyway. If things go as planned, they'll need 5 lines - or is it 50? :biggrin: The "super factories" piece on national geographic showed how tricky it was to get the welds to the desired tolerances, took a lot of time. They (the humans, programmers) must be much better at it by now though.

    Remember when Elon said starting a car company from scratch was like "chewing on glass"? I think I saw it on "revenge of the electric car" (?)
    Heres hoping that by the time they crank out our Model Xs, the "glass chewing" will be a distant (and w distance a happy) memory! ML
     
  20. Gtoffo

    Gtoffo Member

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    I'm pretty sure the Model X would require a new line. It will be easier than building it from scratch as for the Model S, but will still require some time.

    I think the alpha is due any time now. We know Elon has been working on it a lot in the last few months so I wouldn't be surprised to see it come out before the year's end or earlier. Even during the latest FOX interview he has said "we've got some really exciting new products coming out" as a reason for the shorts to stay away from the stock. My bet is alpha reveal in october.
     

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