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posted by martyb on Tuesday August 01 2017, @04:41AM   Printer-friendly
from the production-needs-a-boost dept.

Tesla is beginning to deliver a small number of Model 3 cars, but there are concerns that Tesla will not be able to produce enough cars to meet demand:

Wall Street finally got to see all the details of the Tesla Model 3 during the car's launch event Friday. So far investors have given it the thumbs down with the electric car maker's shares down more than 2 percent midday Monday.

"We believe the Model 3 was as good as or better than expected, and pricing was as expected with considerable initial upsell. That said, the rubber now hits the road, and the fundamental questions remain unanswered," Bernstein's Toni Sacconaghi wrote in a note to clients Monday. "CEO Elon Musk sounds increasingly squeamish about the production ramp." The analyst cited how the $35,000 Model 3 car will not be available until early 2018 with only a higher-priced $49,000 model available this year. He also noted Musk's comment to employees to prepare for "production hell."

Speaking of "production hell", Tesla employees in California are threatening to unionize:

Employees at the electric automaker's factory in Fremont, California, have been agitating for a union since Jose Moran, a production associate, wrote a Medium post in January detailing difficult work conditions at the flagship plant. The bulk of the demands has since centered on improving equipment to reduce workplace injuries.

[...] Musk originally called injury allegations at the Fremont plant "disingenuous or outright false" but has since told employees to report injuries directly to him.

Although the base price of the car is $35,000, that can rise to $55,000 or more after options.

Also at MarketWatch, Ars Technica, and CNET.


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  • (Score: 2) by KilroySmith on Tuesday August 01 2017, @04:41PM (4 children)

    by KilroySmith (2113) on Tuesday August 01 2017, @04:41PM (#547701)

    First I'm a died-in-the-wool Tesla fanboi.

    Second, the Bolt is a good car. Chevy should be applauded for getting a long-range, well-designed electric vehicle to market - the fact that it was BEFORE the Model 3 is another feather in their cap. Job well done.

    The styling of the Bolt isn't much to my liking - but that's true of just about every compact hatchback out there. The good thing about the Bolt is that the styling doesn't scream "I'm one of those weird electric vehicles", like just about every other EV.

    The one missing piece for the Bolt is charging - lack of a fast-charge capability, and a fast charging infrastructure makes it a great city/suburban car that you can't road trip with. Five or ten years from now, that situation may change, but that's the way it is today. That was one of the brilliant insights of Tesla for the Model S - it couldn't replace people's ICE car unless they could road trip; so they built the Supercharger network on their own.

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  • (Score: 2) by richtopia on Tuesday August 01 2017, @06:41PM (3 children)

    by richtopia (3160) on Tuesday August 01 2017, @06:41PM (#547725) Homepage Journal

    The Supercharger network is one of the reasons I don't want to support Tesla.

    You are correct that charging infrastructure is critical for the adoption of electric vehicles. And Tesla was correct in building a network to serve their vehicles; today they have the largest network.

    However, I am disgusted that the company has made their network proprietary. The automotive industry already developed a standard for electric vehicle charging. If gasoline was manufacturer specific it would be such a headache to find the correct refueling station for your vendor, and would lock out completion from the market. If Tesla offered "free lifetime charging at all Tesla chargers" but used the SAE J1772 connection and charged non-Tesla vehicles I would applaud them.

    • (Score: 2) by KilroySmith on Tuesday August 01 2017, @08:05PM (2 children)

      by KilroySmith (2113) on Tuesday August 01 2017, @08:05PM (#547737)

      Musk: That was already said. Actually we've already said that. The intent of the Supercharger network is not to create a walled garden. Any other manufacturer that's interested in using them, we'd be happy to accommodate. It's just that they need to be able to accept the power level of the Superchargers, which is currently 135kW and rising, so any car needs to meet the Supercharger standard. And they'd also need to agree with the business model, which is we don't charge people on a per-charge basis. They'd need to contribute to the capital costs proportional to their fleet's usage of the network. So we think that's pretty fair.

      https://www.engadget.com/2014/06/09/tesla-to-share-supercharger-patents/ [engadget.com]

      • (Score: 2) by vux984 on Wednesday August 02 2017, @12:00AM (1 child)

        by vux984 (5045) on Wednesday August 02 2017, @12:00AM (#547787)

        Any other manufacturer that's interested in using them, we'd be happy to accommodate. It's just that they need to be able to accept the power level of the Superchargers, which is currently 135kW and rising, so any car needs to meet the Supercharger standard. And they'd also need to agree with the business model, which is we don't charge people on a per-charge basis. They'd need to contribute to the capital costs proportional to their fleet's usage of the network. So we think that's pretty fair.

        And yet they've had no takers so far??... Gee, I wonder why?

        • (Score: 2) by arslan on Wednesday August 02 2017, @02:25AM

          by arslan (3462) on Wednesday August 02 2017, @02:25AM (#547822)

          Everyone else prefer's their own walled garden? They feel they can't profit enough off the business model Musk has laid down? They hate Musk for disrupting their industry? They can't cope with the rate of change of the power level and provide the safety required?