Financial news publication Valuewalk published an article earlier this week titled: “Tesla Gigafactory To Get Delayed By Three Years“. The publication has since completely changed the headline to “Tesla Gigafactory construction ahead of schedule” after Tesla issued a statement stating that the battery factory is “ahead of schedule on both construction and production”.
Valuewalk wrote in the original article:
“During the tour, a company spokesman stated that the electric car maker has adjusted its schedule and postponed the completion of the entire factory (13.6 million square feet) to sometime in 2020. Previously, it was scheduled for October 2017, says a report from Seeking Alpha.”
Tesla always stated that the Gigafactory will reach full production in 2020 and that’s likely what the spokesman was referring to in this case. In its new statement, Tesla said that its original forecast for the beginning of production was for January 2017 and not October 2017, but as we already know, Tesla started producing battery packs for its Tesla Energy division back in October 2015.
Obviously, Valuewalk didn’t understand Tesla’s Gigafactory schedule, but in doing so, it pushed the company to issue a welcomed update of the battery factory.
Here’s Tesla’s full statement:
Tesla is currently ahead of schedule on both construction and production at the Gigafactory. To date, we have built 1.9 million square feet of manufacturing space and have started production in a portion of the facility while equipment installation continues throughout other areas. As stated previously, we will be building in phases over time and while our original forecast was to begin production in January, 2017, we actually started battery pack production in October, 2015, over a year ahead of schedule.
In terms of hiring, the Gigafactory will employee up to 6,500 people at full production. As we build the Gigafactory, Tesla continues to show an overwhelming commitment to the Nevada workforce. We have gone way beyond the state’s intention that 50% of the Gigafactory workforce be Nevada residents. Nevada residents currently comprise 80% of the construction workforce at the Gigafactory, and each and every contractor at the Gigafactory exceeds the 50% threshold. Additionally, 94% of Tesla employees at the Gigafactory are Nevada residents.
The company indeed moved the Tesla Energy production line from its Fremont factory to the ‘Gigafactory 1‘ project in Nevada last October. Tesla has since been ramping up for volume production which reportedly started earlier this year and evidenced by a recent leak from inside the plant. Consequently, we recently started seeing more energy storage projects being installed with Tesla Energy products. Tesla and Panasonic plan to start battery cell production at the Gigafactory later this year.