Initial construction should be completed by the end of summer.
Late Sunday evening, Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced that the automaker was hours away from an important event. In 2018, an agreement was made between Tesla and Chinese authorities to begin construction of a new facility in 2019. Now we know the official groundbreaking of Tesla's Chinese Gigafactory in Shanghai will occur on Monday.
Early signs of construction were spotted late last year. According to Chinese media sources, land leveling was completed by December. It seems that further progress will be swift, as Musk says initial construction of the Shanghai Gigafactory is set to be completed before the end of summer.
As InsideEVs had previously reported, Model 3 production is expected to begin in the 2nd half of 2019. Gigafactory 3 will produce battery packs and the Model 3 for the Chinese Market. According to Musk, Chinese Model 3 production is indeed on track to begin production by the end of the year. The Model 3 configuration has already opened to Chinese customers. However, high volume production will not begin until 2020.
Some new info was also provided about the automaker's production plans. Musk states that only lower trim "affordable" versions of the Model 3 and Model Y will be produced in China. Higher cost Model 3's will continue to be produced in the United States, and no production from Shanghai will find its way to North America.
Musk confirmed that the facility will also be home to Chinese production of the upcoming Model Y crossover.
According to a VIP invitation posted by Twitter user Vincent, the groundbreaking ceremony will occur on Monday, January 7 at 3:00 pm in Shanghai.