Tesla just received a permit to begin production of Model 3 sedans at its “Gigafactory” in Shanghai.
Bloomberg reports that China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology announced the permit on its website on Wednesday, November 13. The factory will be the first plant in China that is owned by a foreign carmaker, and it will be Tesla’s first factory outside the U.S.
Tesla will have to compete with other electric car makers in China, such as Zotye (pronounced zoh-tay), which also has electric vehicle models. Nio, another Chinese automaker, creates electric SUVs that like Tesla are equipped with autonomous driving technologies.
Tesla is planning more expansion overseas to compete in the ever-evolving electric vehicle market. Yesterday, Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced a new gigafactory location in Berlin. Tesla’s gigafactories are built in phases so that once a section is completed, manufacturing can begin immediately.
Even though Tesla received the manufacturing permit, according to Bloomberg, carmakers in China must also have all of their products approved for sale by authorities, meaning it could still be a while before Tesla models are rolling off the assembly line in China.
Digital Trends reached out to Tesla to find out when the Shanghai factory will be ready to start producing vehicles, and we’ll update this story once we hear back.
The Shanghai gigafactory is one of four facilities that Tesla has running/in the works. Aside from the newly announced Berlin facility, Nevada and New York play host to Tesla’s two other gigafactories.
True to its mission to limit carbon impact and transition the world to more sustainable energy, Tesla’s massive gigafactories are designed to be primarily powered by solar power and have net-zero energy.
Along with the gigafactory announcements, Tesla also announced a debut date for its first-ever electric pickup truck. The “Cybertruck” will debut on November 21 at Tesla’s design studio in Los Angeles.
The futuristic electric truck is expected to have seating for up to six passengers and between 400 and 500 miles of driving range. Tesla previously confirmed specs that include standard dual-motor all-wheel drive, self-leveling suspension, 360-degree cameras, and an impressive amount of torque.
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