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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: 4, Informative) by richtopia on Tuesday August 01 2017, @06:34PM

    by richtopia (3160) on Tuesday August 01 2017, @06:34PM (#547723) Homepage Journal

    I think most of your data is out of date. American automakers aren't perfect, but particularly during the automotive industry crisis in 2008 they re-evaluated a lot of their infrastructure. Many contracts were re-negotiated to reduce labor costs and improve competitiveness; for example the subcompact Chevy Sonic was able to be produced in Michigan largely because of cheaper labor (

    The big three have also realized that public perceptions on their quality are severely lacking, and have made huge strides to improve quality control. Specifically with the electric drive train of the Bolt it is probably one of the most researched electric drive trains on the market now. General Motors is betting big on the Bolt and I think the car has benefited for it.

    Your concerns are valid; American automakers had a poor track record for a long time. However I would not write them off completely today. They have heard complaints like yours and have spent the last decade dealing with their problems and make a product I trust. With that said, it is actually pretty difficult to find a poorly engineered vehicle for sale in the USA today, as all major manufacturers realize the importance of quality control.

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