Tesla Model 3 production shut down temporarily

Elon Musk agrees that robots slowed down Model 3 production

Leading up to the Model 3 launch, Tesla CEO Elon Musk boasted that Model 3 production would reach 20,000 units per month by the end of December 2017.

Tesla's implemented a Model 3 production break this week as the company struggles to meet demand, reportedly catching employees off guard.

For the second time since February, the automaker halted the Model 3's production line at its Fremont, California plant. The carmaker said then that it planned periods of downtime at both its vehicle and battery factories to improve automation and address bottlenecks. More than 400,000 people have pre-ordered one, paying US$1,000 refundable fees to do so.

In a tweet over the weekend, Musk acknowledged that "excessive automation at Tesla was a mistake". Model 3 production will be suspended for a period of about four to five days, the report said. Even before Musk said as much in the CBS interview, he said so in response to someone on Twitter who was asking for a dual motor version of the Model 3. With a starting price of $35,000, the Model 3 is supposed to be Tesla's most affordable and top-selling vehicle. "We were able to double the weekly Model 3 production rate during the quarter by rapidly addressing production and supply chain bottlenecks, including several short factory shutdowns to upgrade equipment".

Despite the missed targets for the first quarter and the temporary shutdown of the Model 3 assembly line, once back up and running, Musk expects Model 3 output to increase dramatically over the next few months.


A Tesla spokesperson said the electric vehicle maker's production plan for the Model 3 incudes planned downtime in Fremont and at Gigafactory 1 battery plant.

While the firm has taken considerable heat over Model 3 production delays, it is also facing other significant problems that have led to public spats with federal regulators and an investigative journalism organization.

Its financial troubles have been compounded by an investigation by federal safety experts into a fatal crash March 23 that involved a Tesla Model X SUV that was operating with its Autopilot driver-assistance system engaged.

And on Monday, the Center for Investigative Reporting published a report alleging that Tesla had "failed to report some of its serious (workplace) injuries on legally mandated reports, making the company's injury numbers look better than they actually are". On average, equities analysts anticipate that Tesla will post ($1.42) earnings per share for the current fiscal year. "That said, Tesla has done everything in an atypical way", said Higgins.

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