Tesla Still Has Tooling For the Model 3 Waiting for Pickup a Continent Away

tesla model 3

Tesla claims it’s closing in on its goal to produce 2,500 Model 3 sedans a week, even though the original deadline for that target is a few months past. However, a problem remains. Despite having all the tooling needed to hit its mark, some of the essential components are still in Germany when they should be in the United States.

While the automaker still claims it can reach 2,500 unit per week by the end of March, the new automated system for module production needs to be shipped from Grohmann Automation in Dausfeld, Germany, to the company’s Gigafactory, located outside Reno, Nevada. That’s a long distance to ship a lot of hardware in roughly a month’s time, leaving many wondering if Tesla is about to break another promise to investors. 

On Wednesday, CEO Elon Musk explained the tooling situation during a conference call with analysts. “That’s got to be disassembled, brought over to the Gigafactory, and re-assembled and then brought into operation at the Gigafactory. It’s not a question of whether it works or not. It’s just a question of disassembly, transport and reassembly,” he said.

According to Automotive News, Cowen Co. analyst Jeffrey Osborne said the ambitious relocation of so much hardware makes Tesla’s first-quarter output goals “extremely aggressive.”  Meanwhile, George Galliers, an analyst with Evercore ISI, is concerned if the timing required to pull it off is even possible. “Should Tesla miss its 2.5k unit weekly production target, for the end of Q1, investors will be left disappointed and concerns will increase,” he said in a note to clients.

Musk doesn’t want anyone to worry, however. “If we can send a Roadster to the asteroid belt, we can probably solve Model 3 production,” he said during the conference call.

That’s a good point. If SpaceX can put a car into orbit and land rockets with pinpoint accuracy, why the hell can’t Tesla adhere to a production schedule it promised was possible while investors were raining money down on the company?

[Image: Tesla Motors]