Is Tesla taking a production risk with the Model 3?
Recently, Reuters set out to explore and answer this exact question and the conclusion was that Tesla is pushing the boundaries with the Model 3 and it's a risk that will either make or break Tesla.
Tesla Model 3
"Most automakers test a new model's production line by building vehicles with relatively cheap, prototype tools designed to be scrapped once they deliver doors that fit, body panels with the right shape and dashboards that don't have gaps or seams."
"Tesla, however, is skipping that preliminary step and ordering permanent, more expensive equipment as it races to launch its Model 3 sedan by a self-imposed volume production deadline of September, Musk told investors last month."
Basically, Tesla was a bit behind schedule with the Model 3, so in order to catch up, the automaker is skipping a step, but we're not so sure it's a necessary step anyways.
Tesla seems confident it can bypass the ordering of prototype tools, stamps equipment, etc and move right into building what it refers to as release candidates. If the automaker successfully pulls this off, then it may well change how future automobiles are developed.
"Musk’s decision underscores his high-risk tolerance and willingness to forego long-held industry norms that has helped Tesla upend the traditional auto industry. While Tesla is not the first automaker to try to accelerate production on the factory floor, no other rival is putting this much faith in the production strategy succeeding."
Tesla is always looking for ways to revolutionize the automobile and this time the revolution is happening behind the scenes.
If it works, Tesla will be applauded. If it's a total failure, well...