September 1st, 2020 by Steve Hanley
It isn’t often we get a look inside one of Tesla’s factories, so it was a pleasant surprise when Tesla China released a new video this week showing the Model 3 production line in operation. The last look we had inside the factory was in April of this year. The 48 second long video posted to YouTube by Tesla China shows the interaction between robots and human workers on the production line.
In May, Tesla global vice president Tao Lin claimed the Shanghai factory would be able to produce 200,000 cars a year by the end of the second quarter in an interview with Xinhua News Agency. The factory in Shanghai was shut down in February because of the coronavirus and once again briefly in May due to a shortage of parts but it is in full operation now according to Business Insider.
A second production line for the Model Y is currently under construction and reportedly will include an enormous high pressure casting machine similar to the one just installed in Fremont to manufacture the rear sub-chassis for the US made Model 3. The casting machines are the largest in the world and are supplies by Idra Group of Italy. They have a clamping force of up to 6,200 lb.
The Tesla Shanghai factory first began producing cars in November of last year, just 10 months after construction of the factory began. Tesla is now busy building its next factory outside Berlin and claims it may be ready to start production there even more quickly than it did at the Shanghai factory. It is also constructing yet another factory outside Austin, Texas where it will begin producing the highly anticipated Cybertruck as soon as possible.
By comparison, Volkswagen is building a new factory to manufacture its ID.4 and other electric cars in Chattanooga, Tennessee but the first cars are not expected to begin rolling off the line until 2022, almost 18 months after work began on the factory. Tesla is not only revolutionizing the automobile industry but the manufacturing industry as well.
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