Musk: “Next Tesla factory in Germany”
Tesla will build its next factory near Berlin, Elon Musk revealed on Tuesday at an award ceremony in the German capital. The Tesla CEO (pictured) added that the California-based EV manufacturer would also set up an engineering and design centre.
Both that centre and the factory itself, where Tesla expects to churn out Model 3 sedans and Model Y crossovers – as well as batteries – from 2021, will be located near the new Berlin Brandenburg Airport to the south of the city, expected to be completed in 2020.
Mr Musk made the announcement while accepting an accolade for the Tesla Model 3 at the Golden Steering Wheel Awards in Berlin. The news doesn’t completely come as a surprise: in June, Mr Musk had said that Germany was the frontrunner for Tesla to establish its first factory in Europe.
Tesla’s choice for Germany is a disappointment for the UK – Musk is quoted as saying the Brexit was a factor in deciding against a British plant – and a direct challenge to Germany’s auto brands. The German government and auto industry are pumping considerable amounts of money and effort to switch to electric mobility. Only last week, Germany’s chancellor Merkel announced an increase in subsidies for the purchase of EVs – to be paid jointly by government and industry.
Arguably the most pioneering and iconic brand in the emerging pure-electric segment of the automotive market, Tesla has yet to turn a profit. While it expects to become ‘cash-flow positive’ soon, the investments required for new products (including a pickup truck) and factories (including the one in Germany) may push profitability much further into the future.
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