Tesla has been very active this whole year as regarding manufacturing: even though the year 2021 ended with record numbers, the Austin company actually expected more. The goal of one million units was just a few thousand vehicles away, but this year it is clearly within reach. Deliveries are coming quickly thanks to improvements in productivity at the plants, including the Berlin Gigafactory, which has almost doubled manufacturing figures after recent key renovations to the facility; a sharp increase that basically means doubling the volume of work.
Last March was the busiest ever for Tesla – so far - in terms of Gigafactory openings. Just a couple of weeks apart, Elon Musk opened the Berlin and Austin plants, the Texas plant becoming the company's official headquarters and one of its main nerve centers. Despite the very recent opening of both places, the Berlin Gigafactory underwent a small but interesting renovation just a few weeks ago; after closing the assembly lines of the European Tesla Model Y plant for a little while, the reopening could not have been more spectacular.
Before the two-week break, the Brandenburg Gigafactory basically managed to finish 1,000 units per week; an acceptable production volume indeed, but far from the company's estimates. To improve the pace, a drastic decision was made to stop the activities cold turkey and modify the production lines in order to speed up the pace for each work station. In industrial environments, less time normally means more production. The result in this case is obvious, as the plant has just declared that they are now capable of producing 2,000 units of the Tesla Model Y Performance per week: doubling previous numbers.
As expected, the whole thing will not actually stop there: Tesla hopes to further increase the rate and volume of units produced at the factory. For the coming fall 2022, about 3,000 units per week are being estimated; in order to achieve this, the company not only hopes to be more productive per factory, but also in terms of workforce.
Over the next few months, the introduction of a third work shift is expected, as many different sources have already published. The plant is currently operational between 6:30 a.m. and 10:30 p.m.; the new shift to be introduced would cover night hours, keeping the factory open on a 24/7 full time basis.
#GigaBerlinBrandenburgProduction volume of #ModelY is now over 1600 per week and will be increased to 2k per week from September.New colors will also come.https://t.co/dT4HmgpOSh pic.twitter.com/Gd4lc5T1ou— Gigafactory Berlin-Brandenburg (@Gf4Tesla) August 25, 2022
It should be noted that only the most expensive and high-performance models of the Model Y come from the Berlin plant; a model that has already surpassed its brother, the Tesla Model 3, in overall sales figures.
The production of the Long Range Model Ys is carried out in Giga Shanghai in China, from where they are imported. In the coming months the access version to the model will enter the European scene: the basic Model Y will be positioned as the most affordable model of the family. It will be starting at 51,200 euros - without local and government financial aid - for an approved range of 280 miles (455 km) in the WLTP cycle.
All images courtesy of Tesla Inc.
Nico Caballero is the VP of Finance of Cogency Power, specializing in solar energy. He also holds a Diploma in Electric Cars from Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands, and enjoys doing research about Tesla and EV batteries. He can be reached at @NicoTorqueNews on Twitter. Nico covers Tesla and electric vehicle latest happenings at Torque News.