Elon Musk Draws From International Bench to Kickstart Tesla Austin Production
Elon Musk, now running Twitter on top of a handful of other companies, may be overloaded but at least recognizes the need for help. Automotive News reported that the Tesla CEO brought a veteran exec from the company’s Shanghai Gigafactory to Austin, where the automaker plans to ramp up Model Y and Cybertruck production.
Tom Zhu was involved in the buildout of Tesla’s Supercharger network and helped manage the construction of the Shanghai facility. He came with a team of engineers from China to push the Austin factory through the last stages of construction and tooling.
Tesla is counting on the Austin plant to help its vehicles meet the new Inflation Reduction Act's requirements. The rules state that an EV and its battery must be produced in North America to qualify. Tesla’s also staring down record demand for its vehicles, so another production outlet would release some pressure.
Battery development is another concern for the automaker, as it’s having a more challenging time than expected rolling out its new 4680 battery. The company has claimed a significant cost reduction with the batteries. Still, production is slower than desired, leading it to opt for an older battery in the Model Y to meet demand. The big question will be whether Tesla can push its production volume far enough to support an eventual Cybertruck release.
[Image: Roschetzky Photography via Shutterstock]
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