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- Feb 19, 2020
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- SF Bay Area
- Ridgeline, R1200RT, 4285 Express
I'll take that bet! I expect they'll come up with some scrappy short-term substitute for the underbody castings that would have come off on an 8-ton gigapress, probably (as others have suggested) with more pieces. Certainly would take more time to assemble, and weigh a bit more, but could still be sufficiently production-representative to support testing and, perhaps, even, some early sales to employees.Regarding to how they’ll deal with the whole Gigapress issue, I’d be willing to bet they stamp the bodies in Texas and ship them to Fremont.
It makes more sense to me that they'd do that, and figure out how to produce the exoskeleton at scale, at Fremont. They won't be distracted there by the problems of setting up an entirely new factory, and will have their most experienced folks (many of whom I'm sure are chomping at the bit for the opportunity) nearby to contribute. They have essentially the same suite of equipment, already operational, in Fremont. They've also got a 4680 pilot line right there.
Whether any of that actually improves the schedule depends on your view of what that was before this news. I would argue that it is a pragmatic approach to schedule compression and risk retirement, and will probably help to align the availability of a detailed, semi-refined production process with the arrival of actual capacity in Austin. It may keep Tesla on track to produce some saleable CTs in 2021, albeit in Fremont.