Tesla is now preparing the factory, which now makes the Model S and X electric vehicles, to begin producing the more affordable Model 3 sedan in July.
Importantly, Tesla said it doesn't expect this to negatively impact its planned first-quarter deliveries. With a planned 500,000 vehicles to be sold in 2018, assembly lines are now being tested with test models this month for a proposed production start in July. However, he has also said the timeline could be delayed if suppliers don't follow through on time. According to the leaks, test-building the Model 3 will begin on February 20. Given that the cheaper model is also smaller than the higher end units, it's more than likely that its range will benefit from the lighter weight.
On Thursday, Tesla declined to comment to Business Insider on allegations that factory workers face excessive mandatory overtime and unsafe working conditions. This is line with a warning from Musk as well, as he told investors a year ago that there was a possibility of the delay with its July 2017 production target.
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In the past, Tesla has been having problems and delays in delivering the production of their vehicles hence the reason why their investors are getting nervous and are eager to know when is the exact launch date of the Model 3 electric auto. If successful, the sedan could raise Tesla beyond a niche luxury player in the automotive sector.
The back-and-forth between Moran, the UAW and Musk is the latest sign that efforts to unionize the Fremont plant could be picking up steam.
That would expand Tesla's annual production by four to five times compared to 2016 levels. February 20 is two days prior to Tesla's planned fourth-quarter results shareholder meeting. The company said the week-long recess will allow it to boost capacity of its existing paint shop for the sake of the groundwork for the Model 3 along with other general maintenance. However we should not be expecting this truck to come soon as the main focus of company is to fulfill the orders of Model 3. As to what stock options workers get or what they are worth, there is no information.
Regarding Model 3, one source told Reuters last week that the model is still undergoing changes in design, which may delay the ramp-up to full production.