We’re starting to learn a few things about Tesla’s new Gigafactory in Berlin as construction ramps up. We know that it will be beautiful, and feature a rave cave on the roof. We also know that it will feature Tesla’s latest technology including a revolutionary new auto body line, and the new ColorLab paint shop.
But if German tabloid magazine Focus is to be believed, Gigafactory Berlin will be much bigger than anyone is expecting, serving a significant chunk of the European car market:
According to the manufacturer’s plans, up to two million cars per year are to be assembled in the planned Tesla Gigafactory in Grünheide, east of Berlin . This would make Gigafactory’s output more than twice that of VW’s main plant in Wolfsburg.Focus.de
Am I reading this right? Two million cars a year… just out of Berlin?!?
According to estimates by TroyTeslike yesterday, Tesla currently has an annual production capacity of about 722,600 electric vehicles:
If these sources are accurate, Gigafactory Berlin’s max capacity would be equal to nearly three times Tesla’s combined global production capacity today. That’s simply astounding, and can’t be achieved with any battery production technology we know of today.
As a matter of fact, it’s even twice the production capacity of Volkswagen’s main plant in Wolfsburg. Of course, Volkswagen is a huge multinational corporation with many factories all around the world. Still, a Tesla factory that’s twice as big as Volkswagen’s eponymous megafactory in Wolfsburg would leave quite an imposing symbolic impression.
Tesla is expecting a market for twelve million electric vehicles in Europe , it is said. The carmaker wants to cover a significant part of this need with vehicles made in Grünheid. The manufacturer did not respond to an inquiry about its long-term planning.Focus.de
In 2019, there were 15 million new vehicles sold in all of Europe. A market for 12 million electric vehicles a year is a pretty mind-blowing prediction. Maybe overall car sales would increase during an electric vehicle transition, but still –– we’re talking about the electric vehicle market in Europe growing to be about the size of the polluting car market in Europe today. If a market of this size emerged, Gigafactory Berlin would be able to supply about 16% of European demand for new electric vehicles. If the addressable market is really that large, expect Tesla to quickly follow up Berlin with another European Gigafactory –– maybe in the UK?
The current building application for the factory is based on up to 500,000 vehicles a year.Focus.de
To put that in context, Tesla is aiming to produce 500,000 vehicles across all its factories globally in 2020. If Berlin alone is doing 500,000 in the first phase… expect to see some mouth watering growth.
Among other things, the Model 3 and Model Y are to be built in Grünheide. Tesla boss Elon Musk recently tweeted that he could also imagine developing a compact model in Germany.Focus.de
Who knows if this information is legitimate or not, but it sounds like rumors are buzzing across Germany about Tesla’s entry into the luxury car capital of the world. If these first whispers we’re hearing are anywhere close to accurate, Gigafactory Berlin is going to be pumping out a lot more cars than anyone is expecting.
Tesla is hoping to have the first Model Y vehicles rolling off the line in Berlin by around this time next year. These vehicles will feature a single piece casting, new body manufacturing improvements, and a set of redesigned colors including Elon’s new favorite “deep crimson”.