Why I think the Model 3 production line has stopped

Why I think the Model 3 production line has stopped

All signs seem to be pointing to either a pause in production or at the least, a much slower pace than is being reported.

- No new VINs have been registered in more than 3 weeks.
- No one in this forum seems to be getting a VIN or delivery if they configured before Feb 1.
- Tesla Motors Club has a robust thread with pictures from the Fremont factory. The lot has been close to empty lately, where it used to be almost full.

My best guess is they're addressing issues in the production line to get to a higher output, and perhaps that's caused a pause or many pauses in production. I know they're going to be an eventual switch/tandem production with the fully automated line.

Any other guesses or info to share? I'm optimistic they are about to ramp up in a big way, given the non-owner invites that went out this week. Although invites are great, cars are better :-)

njchillie | 2018年2月27日

They’re loading up the white faux leather for the next batch of vehicles.

ReD eXiLe ms us | 2018年2月27日

· Because speculation is the very point of most clickbait threads here...?

MilSpec | 2018年2月27日

Production lines issues (robotics from Germany?) and addressing all the issues reported by employees and Tesla owners who received early cars.

SO | 2018年2月27日

Can you see VINs registered for other countries?

If not, perhaps Tesla the line is running fine and is focusing on Canada so they can push the 200,000 vehicle to April for the new quarter.

billstanton | 2018年2月27日

Yawn. I must visit this forum too much.

Coastal Cruiser. | 2018年2月27日

Just got a text from my friend inside the factory ... Al Cantera has taken hostages and is threatening everyone that they will be smothered with layers of luxurious fabric if they don't reinstate his namesake headliner.

It's a standoff. SWAT (Special Weapons and Textiles) is en route. Film at 11.

ANTHONYROSEJR | 2018年2月27日

Actually I think the opposite there slowing production until April 1st to give everyone one extra quarter of a tax credit.

johnnykadi | 2018年2月27日

Maybe they are prepping the line for dual motor and AWD?

JustSaying | 2018年2月27日

"Actually I think the opposite there slowing production until April 1st to give everyone one extra quarter of a tax credit."
6 weeks from 2/22 is the beginning of Teslas' 2nd quarter.

the.videologists | 2018年2月27日

How is that clickbait? There are actual facts here, picture of the factory and lot, no new registered VINs...provide information that suggests otherwise.

the.videologists | 2018年2月27日

How is that clickbait? There are actual facts here, pictures of the factory and lot, no new registered VINs...provide information that suggests otherwise.

ksalberta | 2018年2月27日

Maybe something to do with preparing to produce AWD cars? It would be a shift to a more complicated set of manufacturing options, and maybe they are readjusting things to be able to run off RWD and AWD cars in rapid succession. I think I saw somewhere that one of the VINs that is coded for AWD has been seen somewhere on a car, so they must be getting ready to go ahead with those. Great news for those who are waiting for AWD!

mntlvr23 | 2018年2月27日

"Actually I think the opposite there slowing production until April 1st to give everyone one extra quarter of a tax credit."

not likely - they would more likely be stockpiling cars or shipping them to Canada. I don't think that Tesla would be purposefully manufacturing at a slower rate then available.

ReD eXiLe ms us | 2018年2月27日

Coastal Cruiser: FYI... That's Special Windings and Tactics instead, I'm sure. ;-)

ReD eXiLe ms us | 2018年2月27日

Oops... I mean, Special Windings and Textiles instead.

Coastal Cruiser. | 2018年2月27日

Much better.

nameless | 2018年2月27日

It does not matter if Tesla is making cars for the US or for Canada. It still draws from the same pool of VINs and assigns them sequentially to all cars that roll off the assembly line. Unless they began using a new "vehicle attributes" combo, and @Model3VINs does not check for it for some reason (e.g. they began making right-hand-drive Model 3's, which they can't, because their last VIN format submission does not include the possibility of RHD 4-door sedans), they have not registered any new VINs since February 3.

They still have some reserve - the highest VIN they got reserved so far is 11348, and the highest VIN they either delivered or promised is 82xx - so they don't need to register any more for now.

ksalberta | 2018年2月27日

"Actually I think the opposite there slowing production until April 1st to give everyone one extra quarter of a tax credit."

No. If they didn't want to ship them in the US they could certainly share them with people in other countries.

Also, they are not near to the 200K ceiling in Q1. We know that they have produced less than 7.5K Model 3s for the US, because 2018 VINs start around 38XX, and they haven't registered anything more. They produce about 25K S/X on average a quarter, and close to half of those go overseas. They ended last year around 160K in the US, and given everything, there is no way they will deliver anything close to 40K cars in Q1. Q2 is when it is possible to hit the 200K mark.

Which is good for those who expect delivery before September, because they will still get the full federal credit.

bernard.holbrook | 2018年2月27日

They are not going to Canada... We don't even have Canadian prices to the car yet and no reported Canadian invitations to configure.

Stood in line, non-owner

pjalan | 2018年2月27日

I’m with German robots being assembled. As soon as they are assembled we are hitting 3k a week.

WantMY | 2018年2月27日

Hopefully, they are finished with making/selling beta cars by now.

mos6507 | 2018年2月27日

"addressing all the issues reported by employees and Tesla owners who received early cars."

One can dream... Those sunken hood and bulging headlight reports I'm reading about today are depressing.

flyboynwa | 2018年2月27日

I disagree, just read an article with a Bloomberg projection and the show that Tesla could hit 20000 in March
I absolutely agree with just saying
Tons of Offers to build went out on feb 14
6 weeks from that date is April 1
That’s when I am expecting my vehicle delivery
Let’s see what happens

flyboynwa | 2018年2月27日

Sorry missed a 0 200000

weluvm3 | 2018年2月27日

"One can dream... Those sunken hood and bulging headlight reports I'm reading about today are depressing."

But Tesla will fix those cars, right?

Dsmtesla | 2018年2月27日

I agree with the original post.. there are people who configured in January still waiting on a vin... I think tesla made a calculated risk decision to release vins to the last of the owners and non owners because I believe they know the community was becomming unhinged, and they needed good press... Can you imagine if tesla didnt take a single new configuration for the entire month of february? The media backlash would be insane. I believe its why they they added 2 weeks to the back end of the delivery estimates to buy a little more time to get cars out, Knowing if they miss that by a couple weeks on the backend customers will still be ok with it.
I hope im wrong, and people start getting cars next week (from feb 14th configs) which would be 3 weeks, but i highly doubt it

mntlvr23 | 2018年2月27日

Regarding trying to get good press .... I think just the fact that they tendered invites to any non-owners on 02/22 would have been enough for good press.

The fact the there were so many non-owners given invites would be overkill if it was just done for good press with nothing to back it up (and would insure a greater amount of deferred bad press). I am hopeful that there was a really good reason for so many non-owner invites, and that would be that they are in a position to back it up.

cnistal1 | 2018年2月27日

I'm one those non-owners invited on the 22nd. So, I hope you're correct. I personally don't believe Tesla would create invites just for good press. As you mentioned, the backlash would be a huge PR problem.

rgrant | 2018年2月27日

Hmm if they’ve stopped the line for the battery production line upgrades this be a good time to slot in some changes to the Fremont line too. I imagine the German line was airshipped over because there’s no time to waste!

Yodrak. | 2018年2月27日

"I think I saw somewhere ..."

We have a new champion of wishy-washy, most contenders know they saw somewhere.

LostInTx | 2018年2月27日

I was to understand that the assembly line from Germany was to disassembled and shipped in March. If there's a lot of preparatory work required to receive that equipment, sufficient to stop production, it may be weeks before they build more cars. Personally, I don't buy this argument.

But if the previously full lot is now almost empty, that's a concern, unless the transportation infrastructure has really taken off.

The OP has the right to offer his perception. Not conforming to fanbois' narrative doesn't make it clickbait.

Bubba2000 | 2018年2月27日

Car factories usually stop to retool for new models and maintenance. More than likely the battery pack factory has been air freighted to the GF for assembly, testing production. While tat is going on, the Fremont factory could get retooled for AWD, performance options, etc. Tesla needs to step up production, and initially increase ASP.

Even if they upgrade the factory, the volume ramp will take time. It is a gradual process.

RP3 | 2018年2月28日

my take is that regardless of whether there are factory issues preventing them from producing more model 3s, I think they are using the fleet of cars now in service with employees and previous owners and are working on getting the issues list down to a manageable service level. If there are X% of the model 3s that are needing to be brought into the service centers to get either a hardware or firmware fix, they may have a target % they are trying to hit before going beyond ~8000 active cars. Before opening the floodgates of more model 3s into the wild, they want to have the service events down to a manageable level or they'll be spending too much $$$s on servicing the model 3 fleet.

Nexxus | 2018年2月28日

The reason they could go out with the non-owner invites is, they probably have configurations already made and delivered to their area that they can match up and get them sold now. IMHO.

burdogg | 2018年2月28日

Not sure on that Nexxus - as many of us are waiting 3+ weeks on VIN - if those cars were just sitting in these areas waiting to match up - that is a long time to just match color and wheels :)

kj5hp | 2018年2月28日

I was at the Tesla factory in Fremont on Friday for a tour at 3pm and the M3 production line didn't move an inch during my entire hour there. Saw about 10 frames just stopped in the queue.

Also to note, despite the increased delivery time on mX/mS the production line was humming at an impressive speed.

jordanrichard | 2018年2月28日

IF and that is a big IF, M3 production stopped for this inbound item from Germany, that would be a perfect example of "just in time" manufacturing gone wrong. If all it was that the battery packs are being delayed,, why not continue to build the cars minus the battery pack and set them aside. Then once the packs arrive, they just need to slap them in and the car is done.

tranhv68 | 2018年2月28日

I configured my model 3 4 weeks ago and I have yet to receive a VIN number.

bayareakid2008 | 2018年2月28日

The invites to non-owners appears to be a PR move. Already preparing myself for the next delay

H271 | 2018年2月28日

Yea no one getting cars anytime soon. Bloomberg reporting decrease in production.

jordanrichard | 2018年2月28日

"Bloomberg reporting decrease in production", based on what? You sure they are not just regurgitating other rumors? These outfits often cite Insideevs, but Insideevs is just speculating themselves.

Frank99 | 2018年2月28日

bak -
It is grating that you appear to gloat over every Tesla misstep, over every report (whether true or not) of a fault in a Tesla, especially in a Model 3. Your day doesn't appear to be complete without a chance to take a swipe at a company which is trying to do the impossible - and which is, mostly succeeding. But that doesn't mean that you're always wrong.
I agree with your assesment. My current estimate is Mar-May, and unless a miracle happens I just don't see that happening with what appears to be an extended production line stop. I'm going to go sit in the corner and cry a little bit.

H271 | 2018年2月28日

I'm sure of nothing. But they are being thorough using reports, government data, VIN tracking, etc. It is the best we will get. And given no one seems to be getting VINs lately, that is aligned.

phil | 2018年2月28日

It does sound like an intentional slowdown. I think there are three reasons:

1. Delay sale of 200,000th US car till Q3
2. Gear up to highest possible production rate for the remainder of the year, to maximize customer tax credits
3. Work out some of the bugs, so Service gets less overwhelmed when they finally do start producing in volume next July.

I think this move makes all kinds of sense for Tesla. They really need to ramp up, improve quality, and milk those last US taxpayer subsidies for all they're worth. The only problem is, they're lying to customers (and investors, regulators, probably auditors) about the true shape of the planned ramp. I expect they'll just blow it off as usual, saying it was a recent change in plan to benefit customers. But an honest company would communicate the truth up front.

bayareakid2008 | 2018年2月28日

Fank99, I'm sorry if you take criticisms as gloating. That is not my intention.

KP in NPT | 2018年2月28日

It's clearly paused for adding white interior and as a bonus, AWD - so glad I waited! ;-)

bschles | 2018年2月28日

Configured Model 3 on January 25th and send $2,500 - but still no VIN after over 4 weeks. Hope for all our sakes that the impasse breaks ASAP.

socaldave | 2018年2月28日

Me n you, KP, me n you. MIsery loves company and all that!

But an interesting point about white interior AND AWD.... I certainly don't need it in socal, but if it's available in a time frame that fits the tax credit... damn. One more thing to delay my invitation to configure. AND I SEE IT EVERY DAY! It just sits there... "Build me, Dave... what are you waiting for?"

(I imagine my car having a female HAL-9000 voice haha)

Shock | 2018年2月28日

I have no idea if they are still making cars, but I imagine nobody here really believes that four weeks from now they will be making 2500 cars/week.

Carl Thompson | 2018年2月28日

Tesla made a special and vigorous point of reaffirming they could get to 2,500 Model 3 per week by the end of Q2 even _without_ the German production line. So it seems odd that there are all these reports of idleness at the Fremont factory...