Tesla fixes Model 3 battery/chassis marriage bottleneck, builds 500 units/day for clearer path to 5,000/week

Tesla has made some progress in Model 3 production ramp this week, according to CEO Elon Musk.

Musk told employees today that they have achieved a new record production capacity at a problematic part of the line and they reached the expected 500 cars per day production rate.

As we reported last week, Musk told employees in an email obtained by Electrek:

It is looking quite likely that we will exceed 500 vehicles per day across all Model 3 production zones this week.

A few days late, but Tesla has now apparently reached the goal.

The CEO congratulated employees in another email obtained by Electrek today:

First time we’ve been able to run at a rate of 500/day or an extrapolated 3500 customer deliverable cars per week. Congratulations on a big milestone!

Model 3 production runs 24/7 and therefore, it results in a production rate of 3,500 Model 3 vehicles per week, but it remains to be seen if Tesla can sustain it.

Tesla aims to reach a production rate of 5,000 Model 3 vehicles per week around the end of the quarter.

The automaker is currently working through some bottlenecks in the production process to get there. Musk said that Tesla was holding a hackathon to fix two problematic robot bottlenecks in Model 3 production a week ago.

A bottleneck at the assembly of the battery pack with the chassis of the Model 3 has been fixed, according to another email that Musk sent to employees:

Congrats to the battery/chassis marriage line, which just did 32 UPH! Shows that it is possible to achieve over 5000 cars per week even with our super complicated GA line. Sorry you have to work on this terrible thing! We are working on improving it as fast as possible.

If they can sustain that rate, the process would be able to handle almost 6,000 units per week.

In an interview with CBS last month, Musk showed the battery/chassis marriage line. Here are a few images:

On Twitter yesterday, Musk said that he was working on the production line this week.

In the email, he also encouraged employees to stop him on the production lines if they have ideas or concerns.

As announced during the Q1 2018 earning results, Tesla plans a Model 3 production shutdown for a few days for another upgrade next week.

Electrek’s Take

I am growing increasingly confident in Tesla achieving the promised 5,000 Model 3 vehicles per week within the next two months.

It’s now even more important for Tesla to reach the target since it is linked to bringing to production the Model 3 dual motor AWD and Performance versions, which the company started taking orders for.

Those new versions will add complexity to the production line and Tesla will need to have a solid footing before starting production.

There could always be a few setbacks, but I think Tesla could soon make the critics forget the few months of Model 3 production delays.

If they are now at 3,500 units per week after being at about 2,000 vehicles per week before the last production upgrade, the next upgrade could bring them pretty close to 5,000 units per week.

Am I being too optimistic? What do you think? Let us know in the comment section below.

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