Tesla has produced 5,000 Model 3 electric cars during the last week of June. This was well within the initial target set by CEO Elon Musk. The 5,000 Model 3s were off the assembly line by early Sunday according to a report on Reuters. There was also a number of social media posts by workers that confirmed this report. Musk tweeted that Tesla had in fact produced 7,000 cars over a period of seven days. It was not clear though whether this was a combination of the Model S, the Model X, and the Model 3.
The ambitious target set for the Model 3 required the production of at least 5,000 electric cars per week. However, despite efforts, Tesla had failed for months to hit this huge goal. In May 2017, Tesla wrote to its shareholders to let them know that it had decided to ramp up its production facilities in order to support a faster production of the Model 3. The letter also revealed that once the facility is up and running, there will be enough capacity to hit the 5,000 cars per week target. Despite this, since May of last year when the Model 3 was first unveiled, Tesla has been behind schedule on production and delivery.
The company says that there have been a number of issues in production and in fact at some point they had to revert to hand-building in order to keep things going. The first real Model 3 production issues came into light in early October 2017. At the time, Tesla reported that it had produced only 260 cars in the third quarter and delivered 220. Musk himself has acknowledged the challenge of producing this model. At one time, he called the Model 3 a “production hell” in reference to the challenge encountered during this process.
But the Tesla CEO has really stepped to ensure that production targets are back on schedule. For instance, Musk recently issued a directive to company employees to erect a giant tent outside its Fremont, California factory to house an additional assembly line for the Model 3. There’s no doubt that hitting 5,000 cars per month in production is a big step. But still, Tesla has a lot to prove to its customers and shareholders. Most importantly, the company needs to show that it can consistently maintain its current speed.
It’s also important for Tesla to ensure that all the cars produced don’t have any issues. It’s very easy to make a few blunders under such high-pressure production conditions. Tesla has already opened up Model 3 orders to all reservation holders. We are talking about tens of thousands of people here. Anyone who wants to buy the Model 3 will have to choose among three options. There will be the long-range, 310-mile rear wheel drive, the long-range, dual motor, all-wheel drive, and the performance variant. Once customers make their selection, they will immediately get delivery estimates. The delivery will depend on the order date and the vehicle configuration they choose.