Analyst: Musk may regret choosing Germany to build Tesla's first European factory

IT Information-IT Home2022-09-23 10:17:48

September 23, Tesla recently outlined the determinants of its megafactory location, including simplifying the approval process as much as possible

span>.Analysts believe this may be because the company has learned lessons from the German factory building process.Elon Musk probably wouldn't have his first European factory in Germany if he could do it all over again.

Ben Kallo, an analyst at financial services firm Baird, wrote in a research note that Tesla has experienced a lot of similar things in Gruenheide, outside Berlin.In April last year, the company complained that the process of getting final approvals for the plant was "annoying."Musk danced excitedly when the factory opened in March, in what was seen as a rare moment of celebration.

Tesla first announced in late 2019 that it would build a factory in Germany, but construction was delayed for months as environmental groups feared the facility would use too much water and threaten local wildlife..A few weeks after production finally started, Musk called Tesla's factories in Germany and Texas a "huge money melting pot" that has lost billions of dollars.

Now, more trouble is coming.Last week, broadcaster RBB reported that the Glenhead City Council had indefinitely delayed a vote on a plan to expand Tesla's factory by about 100 hectares to increase the freight yard.and a warehouse for storing parts.At least part of the expansion would affect the conservation area, and any plan to cut down more trees would surely be met with fierce opposition from environmental groups.

Glenhead Mayor Arne Christiani said by phone: "It is important for Tesla to clarify development plans for the entire Glenhead facility withIt is unclear when this issue will be resolved."

Indications are that the bureaucracy of the German government is paying a high price for Tesla's investment in Glenhead.Late last year, the company decided to forgo 1.14 billion euros ($1.12 billion) in state subsidies, as it opted to first try producing new batteries in Texas.Media reports this month said Tesla had suspended plans to make batteries in Germany and discussed shipping battery-making equipment to the United States.

But the economy minister of the state of Brandenburg, where the Tesla factory is located, Joerg Steinbach, said Wednesday that he had been assured by Tesla that the plan was going well.He tweeted after speaking with Tesla representatives in Washington: "Tesla's commitment to Glenhead remains unchanged, especially with regard to expansion plans for vehicle production. Battery plant nearing completion, internal process improvements and prioritiesSequence is pending confirmation."

Amid all this coverage, Tesla recently hosted an open house at the Glenhead Convention Center.The Tesla employee, wearing a black T-shirt, described the automaker's plans for logistics, hiring and expansion, and touched on a few more sensitive issues, such as water consumption.

One ​​of the more talked-about topics: Tesla employees said it was no longer possible to meet scheduled production targets due to supply chain hurdles, factory closures due to coronavirus restrictions and soaring logistics costs.That's why Tesla is trying to expand the factory, which has warehouses for more parts and a multi-track freight yard that moves goods from trucks to trains.

Tesla has made a number of unconventional moves to get out of production woes before, perhaps most notably in 2018, when the company faced difficulties in ramping up Model 3 production.challenge.Eventually, Tesla built a makeshift assembly line under a giant outdoor tent to ramp up production.

The German government's heavy bureaucracy and powerful unions make it more difficult to address these kinds of unconventional problems.Musk said at Tesla's annual meeting last month that in Austin and Glenhead, there are still many problems to be solved.While both plants may be difficult to operate, the company has clearly shown a greater willingness to do more in Texas.

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