Next to the Q3 earnings presented last night, in which it was shown that the Model 3 helped push Tesla to profitability for the first time, there have been further updates. These regard the Model Y and the ride-sharing plans, as well as Tesla’s stratgey for Europe and China.
Regarding the Model Y, Tesla plans to use their new factory in China to not only manufacture the Model 3. Also the electric SUV will be made at the Gigafactory 3 as a locally submitted application shows. Between the Model 3 and Y, Tesla plans an annual production rate of 250,000 vehicles at the factory. This is also the starting capacity, as the company plans to expand production to 500,000 vehicles before long. During the Q3 presentation, CEO Elon Musk also added that the Model Y would be ready for production in 2020. The official presentation is currently set for March next year. The first teaser of the vehicle was released in August 2017.
In the new business report, Tesla also announced their intention to begin production at the Shanghai facility earlier than originally planned. The first Model 3 will roll off the production line in China before the end of 2019. The exact statement was as follows: “In order to significantly increase the affordability of Model 3, we have decided to accelerate our manufacturing timeline in China. We are aiming to bring portions of Model 3 production to China during 2019 and to progressively increase the level of localization through local sourcing and manufacturing. Production in China will be designated only for local customers.”
The configurator for the Model 3 will also be activated this year in Europe as well as China this year, which formally allows for vehicle orders. The delivery start for Europe was also added to be starting in early 2019. The reception at the Paris Motor Show and the Goodwood Festival of Speed in the UK had been very positive.
Another update was also delivered for the ride-share plan, which has gone under the radar for some time now. In the presentation, Musk mentioned that Tesla would definitely be offering the service in future, which will likely be competing with Lyft and Uber. Tesla has the advantage of having access to their own electric vehicles with autonomous driving capabilities, which is not the case for any of the other services. He believes that would provide Tesla the long-term market advantage.
The concept that Tesla would be implementing was described as “a synthesis of popular services like Uber and Lyft, as well as Airbnb”. This means it would allow Tesla owners to provide their car for the service when not in use, for payment, of course. In places where this would not supply the demand, the company would provide its own fleet. A launch date was not set by the Tesla CEO, however.