It hasn’t been clear when Tesla plans to bring to market the Model Y, the automaker’s upcoming all-electric compact SUV, but CEO Elon Musk has now commented on a timeline for the vehicle.
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Last year, Musk surprised people when he said that Model Y will be built on a new platform for production in “late 2019 to 2020”.
That was a change from their previous plan to build the vehicle on the Model 3 platform in order to bring it to market faster.
Musk later walked back on his latest announcement and Tesla will go back to its original plan in order to bring the car to market sooner.
During a conference call following the released of the company’s financial results today, Musk said that Tesla will start capital investments for Model Y, which generally means investing in production, by the end of 2018.
He also added that production plans with a location will be unveiled in the next 3 to 6 months – hinting at a possible new factory for the vehicle.
That was later reinforced in the call when Musk said that Tesla is planning a significant increase in manufacturing efficiency from Model 3 to Model Y, which could result in a production capacity of 1 million units per year for a smaller investment than the Model 3’s planned production of 500,000 units per year, according to Musk.
He added that he is “pretty excited about the Model Y manufacturing” and how they plan to “avoid all the pain that they went through with Model 3 production ramp up.”
Well, that’s another interesting albeit confusing development for Model Y.
Considering the previous changes between being based on the Model 3 platform and having a brand new platform, it now sounds like it could be a hybrid of both?
It definitely sounds like they are planning some significant changes to make the vehicle much easier to manufacture than the Model 3, but it might not include a completely different architecture like originally announced.
When talking about the new Model Y platform last year, he said that Tesla will get rid of the 12-volt battery architecture. It means no more lead-acid battery and a different way to power in-car electronics. Musk says that they will reduce the overall wiring significantly and simplify the production process.
Less wiring harness means easier automation in the production process and Musk plans a completely different – more automated – production line for the Model Y. He said that the Model 3 production lines will be comparable to the best lines in the industry while the Model Y line will be “something else”.
Now it also sounds like this Model Y line could be built at a new factory to be announced in 6 months?
What do you think? Let us know in the comment section below.