To meet the lofty production targets set for the Tesla Model 3, it seems that Elon Musk is fully committing himself to getting the job done.
In a conference call to investors, Musk revealed that he had been sleeping in a sleeping bag on the factory floor to ensure that production goals were being met. This comes on the heels of massive pre-orders being made for Tesla’s latest affordable offering. The Model 3 has seen mass hype, with nearly 400,000 pre-orders worldwide. It actually holds the record for the biggest one-week launch of any product ever.
Tesla’s goal now is to ramp up production to 500,000 vehicles by the end of 2018, which is two years ahead of schedule. This comes as great news to hopeful buyers who feared having to wait upward of four years to get their new vehicles. It also means that 2017’s goal of 100,000 vehicles has now doubled to 200,000. Musk told investors that the capital budget of $1.5 billion would have to increase by half to meet this new target.
Last month, Tesla hinted that pre-orders for the Model 3 had been very high in China, but did not reveal a number.
China is shaping up to be a huge market for Tesla. Right now, it’s the companies second-largest stronghold after the United States. “The potential is huge, and Tesla is fully committed to developing the Chinese market,” said Tesla’s Global Vice President Robin Ren. “Our mission is to promote the use of electric cars in the world. This cannot be achieved without our presence in China.”
Musk’s goal is to produce one million vehicles by 2020.
“Tesla is going to be hell-bent on becoming the best manufacturer on Earth,” said Musk. It’s a lofty claim, especially after the hurdles the company has faced with Model X production. “The Model 3 is trying to take a lot of lessons from the Model X,” said Musk. He plans on creating a “tighter feedback loop” between design and manufacturing.
If things go according to plan, then Tesla could become the biggest automotive success story since Ford.