Tesla Confirms Fremont Factory Usage Is Now At 40%

3 years ago by Eric Loveday 14

Tesla's Fremont Factory - 40% Utilized

Tesla’s Fremont Factory – 40% Utilized

Tesla Model S  Production

Tesla Model S Production

Nearly one month ago, we broke the news that Tesla Motors is now utilizing “nearly 50% of its 380-acre, 5.4 million square foot Fremont, California factory.

Tesla Motors immediately suggested to us (via email) that it had not publicly discussed that figure.

The automaker didn’t imply we were wrong.  However, Tesla didn’t offer up more accurate information to perhaps counter our report saying it was unable to release that data.  So, we assumed we were right.

Now, courtesy of Bloomberg, we see that our report was indeed accurate.  Per Bloomberg:

“When Tesla started production there in 2012, it said it was using about one-fifth of the site. Now it says it’s using 40 percent to make electric motors and battery packs as well as cars.”

40% = nearly 50% to us, especially since our estimate came from an inside source who perhaps lacks access to all the necessary intel needed to provide us with a more accurate figure.

Diarmuid O’Connell, Tesla’s vice president for business development, stated:

“It’s poorly understood how much Tesla has invested in the state of California”  and “how much it’s added in just the past 18 months.”

Source: Bloomberg

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14 responses to "Tesla Confirms Fremont Factory Usage Is Now At 40%"

  1. kdawg says:

    It will go up more when the Model X lines are installed later this year.

    1. Mike I says:

      My understanding was that they installed a new and improved line for Model S along side the existing one, hence doubling of the floor area utilization. After the existing production is all moved over to the new line, they would idle the old line so that they could incorporate all the improvements and allow production of Model X. Eventually they will move the battery assembly out to the GigaFactory to make room for Gen III assembly.

      1. Anon says:

        Interesting. Where did this deep understanding come from?

        1. Mike I says:

          I just took a tour of the factory. What I said above is not correct. They are CURRENTLY building a new final assembly line that will assemble Model S and Model X. It’s not done yet. The new line will be a straight assembly line. The current line snakes around in a small area at one end of the building. There is currently a lot of peripheral sub-assembly, R&D and warehousing in the factory that doesn’t have to be there.

  2. GeorgeS says:

    I’m surprised it’s that high already.
    Great!

  3. Anon says:

    Always difficult to reprimand an online publication without counter evidence publicly available at the time. Controlling information flow and accuracy can be a real bear for both sides in the media making relationship, when data flows so easily from the fingers onto the screen…

    But good to know folks at all levels within Tesla Motors read this site, too. 🙂

    40% of the ‘ol NUMI Plant is an awesome achievement! Is this number before or after some operations are moved into the smaller fab facility located 50 miles away?

    Does this mean Model X production is likely to raise this figure to 60 – 80 percent facility utilization?

  4. Boris says:

    OK, so if this is at 40% today, I wonder how they’ll squeeze in Model S, X and Gen3 in a few years…

    1. RedLeafBlueLeaf says:

      The usage of space may not grow linearly with the growth of output. First, you can expand production on existing lines by adding shifts until the factory is in operation 24×7. Second, even on a line operating 24×7 there may be sections of the factory – feeders to the main assembly line for example, that are not fully utilized and can be shared with a second or third line.

  5. PJS says:

    So I guess if a car advertises 50mpg then 40mpg is just the same, right?

    1. Rob Stark says:

      Gallons not the same as percentage.

      1. Steve S. says:

        No, it’s like 40mpg is “nearly 50mpg”. 🙂

        1. Eric Loveday says:

          True dat 😉

    2. Mint says:

      Obviously.

      The Ford C-Max paved the way for that…