Tesla Acquired Grohmann Engineering and formed Tesla Advanced Automation Germany, in part to help with the Model 3 production ramp
Tesla is continuing to work with Grohmann employees and is prepared to handle a strike if one occurs, though the automaker doesn't see any action affecting the Model 3 production timeline.
As we reported last week, a worker strike at Tesla acquired Grohmann Engineering is a ultimately a possibility. This didn't come as a huge surprise, since once Tesla took over, and created Tesla Advanced Automation Germany, changes were imminent. We shared that Tesla will no longer allow the former supplier to work with its other longtime customers, namely "German automakers."
While some might see this as unfair, or even a low blow to rivals, it really isn't sensible for Tesla to be assisting its competitors' automation needs, especially when it can likely barely satisfy its own.
Tesla doesn't "anticipate any impact" on the Model 3 production timeline, even if a strike plays out.
Model 3 production constraints and timelines make it so that Tesla needs to be super-focused on its own needs. Supplying others would just not be intelligent at this juncture. But, Grohmann employees have become used to their work and which companies they work with, so it is expected that they will react. Added to this, the employees are well aware of Tesla's market cap and popularity, so why not attempt to gain some leverage?
IG Metall, a German labor union involved in the impending strike, asserts that Tesla Grohmann workers are unhappy with current wages. At this point, Tesla is arguing that it has compensated employees with a bonus, as well as a stock grant.
The union in Germany is known to have a great deal of power over other automakers, including General Motors and Volkswagen, and German laws work hard to protect workers and support union interests, so Tesla is not taking the threats lightly. However, the company stated:
“We continue to work directly with Tesla Grohmann employees and are prepared in the event there is an action initiated by the union."
Tesla has assured that it doesn't "anticipate any impact" on the Model 3 production timeline, even if a strike plays out. However, a lengthy strike, and continued pressure from IG Metall, will surely not "help" the automaker in its endeavors.
Source: USA Today