Tesla’s $35,000 Model 3, which isn’t starting production until July, already has 400,000 reserved, and the electric car company has already teased two new electric vehicles: the mysterious Model Y crossover and Tesla Semi. Due to the increased demand, CEO Elon Musk expects "possibly as many as 10 or 20" new factories worldwide will need to be built.
The 200-acre Fremont, California factory, bought from Toyota for bargain at $42 million, already produces the Models S, X, and 3. The Nevada Gigafactory will produce all the battery cells for the vehicles, as well as the Powerwall and Powerpack storage devices. Three other new gigafactories are in the works.
|Tesla's Nevada Gigafactory|
“There’s just no way we could do Model Y at Fremont,” CEO Elon Musk said at Tesla’s annual shareholder meeting. “So it’s going to have to be somewhere else.”
While the Model X crossover was based on the Model S sedan, the Model Y will not use the Model 3 chassis, but instead use a new platform loaded with the latest tech. For instance, the teaser image hints which that cameras may replace the side view mirrors.
Whatever innovative and audacious bells and whistles Tesla fills the new SUV with The Model Y won't be excessively tricked out like the Model X, which Musk compared to a Faberge Egg. "It'll be simple," he said.
That means it will be cheaper than the $82,500 Model X, as well. If the Model Y follows the Model 3's path to mainstream affordability, it would have to be. One of its coolest features, the amazing falcon-wing doors, that lift up and then out — as to not ding the car parked next to you, are rumored to be included on the Model Y.
If Musk's boasts about the heavy duty, long range Tesla Semi are even half true, it could revolutionize the trucking industry and create that demand for several new factories around the world.
|The Tesla Semi: The Death of the Diesel?|
"People don’t think is possible," said Musk, a man who seems to be driven by realizing the impossible.
"We want to show an electric truck can out-torque any diesel semi," he explained. "If you had a tug of war competition, the Tesla Semi will tug the diesel semi uphill.
The power will purportedly come from a "bunch" of Model 3 motors to make driving the Tesla Semi "feels like a sports car," Musk says.
We'll have to wait until September for a full reveal.
Still so much is unknown as to where and when these new plants will be constructed, but one thing is for certain. Musk doesn’t need any new factories to manufacture his greatest export: hype.