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Tesla receives greenlight to build 2,000 Model Y bodies at Gigafactory Berlin ahead of final approval

Tesla has received a special approval from the Brandenburg State Environment department to build 2,000 Model Y bodies at Gigafactory berlin ahead of the much-coveted final approval.

Over the last year, Tesla has run into a lot of red tape while trying to get approval to start production at Gigafactory Berlin, a giant new factory located near Berlin in Brandenburg.

The bottleneck right now is the environmental approval from the Brandenburg State Environment Ministry.

Most recently, environmental groups had managed to obtain an extension of the public commentary period for the project, which delayed approval for another month. The new period concluded last November, and Tesla has been rumored to be on the verge of approval, but it has yet to happen.

While waiting for the approval, Tesla was authorized to produce 250 Model Y bodies for testing purposes. Some Model Y vehicles were spotted leaving the plant last month. Now, Tesla has received another approval to produce 2,000 Model Y bodies at Gigafactory Berlin.

This is a much higher number, but Tesla will not be able to sell those vehicles.

According to the updated advanced approval, Tesla told Brandenburg that it wasn’t satisfied with the quality of the first 250 vehicle bodies that it produced (translated from German):

The applicant has explained in detail – and also plausibly for the approval authority – their technical necessity. Because the results of the ongoing system tests show that the necessary quality and production efficiencies in relation to the above-mentioned operating units have not yet been achieved. The parts and/or bodies manufactured or joined as part of the system tests have a poor quality that deviates significantly from the system specifications. It is also understandable for the authority that the system tests are those that represent the indispensable minimum for the respective test procedures with a view to the specific system (parts) to be tested.

Tesla is approved to produce 500 Model Y bodies per week and therefore, it would take them at least four weeks to produce those vehicles.

That said, this doesn’t mean that it couldn’t get the final approval beforehand since the government has confirmed that it received all the necessary documents to make a decision as of the last week of December.

Here’s the full document for advanced approval:

[scribd id=552082735 key=key-5K2jEra0r3SsNa5VlV2Y mode=scroll]

Tesla had originally planned to start production by the end of 2021, but now it’s not clear what the new timeline is – though it is believed to be immenent.

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