Tesla opened its first Gigafactory on July 29, 2016 with only 14 percent of the factory operating. They had three out of twenty-one sections operating. They will reach full capacity and factory completion by 2020. The first Gigafactory is getting maxed out with the production of about 500,000 Tesla cars and charging battery products in North America.
Elon Musk has talked about the need for ten to twenty Gigafactories for Tesla to makes planned products and volume. He also said the world would need one hundred Gigafactories to make electric cars and batteries for the world.
There are recent projections for 17 times more battery production by 2030. However, the battery forecasts keep increasing and the pace keeps accelerating.
The factory passed 20 Gigawatt-hours (GWh) of batteries per year in mid-2018. Panasonic will add 3 battery cell production lines. It will result in an annual production rate of 35 GWh. Tesla has increased the planned total capacity to 105 GWh of battery cells and 150 GWh of total battery pack output.
Tesla is still battery cell starved. Tesla and PG&E are making a 1.1 GWh Powerpack utility battery system. Tesla could be one of few companies make several larger expansions of battery storage for California utilities. Other states and countries could require battery storage for renewables and for energy grid stabilization. Tesla famously built a battery farm for Australia to stabilize a section of its energy grid.
The Tesla Gigafactory 2 is a solar cell factory in Buffalo, New York. Construction on the factory started in 2014 and was completed in 2016–17.
Tesla Gigafactory 3 is a battery and car factory in Shanghai. This will enable the production of another 500,000 cars per year. China has demand for about half of the world’s electric cars. A factory in China will avoid any tariffs in Trade wars.
Tesla Gigafactory Europe (aka Gigafactory 4 or 5) is a proposed manufacturing plant for Tesla, Inc. to be located in Europe. A location has yet to be decided but Germany is a leading choice. This factory would also build electric cars and batteries.
Tesla will need to build more Gigafactories for new products like a model Y SUV, solar roof tiles, big pickup truck, semi-truck and a new roadster. The pickup truck will have a really futuristic-like cyberpunk Blade Runner design. There will also be a compact hatchback and a stretch model X minibus.
The Ford F series pickup trucks are selling nearly one million trucks each year. Ford could sell more than 941,000 of the trucks in 2018. The average price for an F series is $46,751. Ford sells the F-450 at over $100,000 each.
GMC (General Motors) has comparable sales for its Sierra and Silverado trucks. Fiat Chrysler Ram trucks are about half the volume of Ford. Combined there are about 2.2 million pickup trucks sold in the USA each year.
The pickup is going to be a priority after the Model Y. The pickup truck will take priority over the Tesla Semi and next-generation Roadster:
Lot on our plate, so it’s either get van gliders (no battery, powertrain or compute tech) from Daimler & produce sooner or do all & produce later. Not a big difference to total vehicles produced either way. Priority list is Model Y, solar roof tiles, pickup, semi, Roadster.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) November 19, 2018
In order of resource priority, but not necessarily production ramp, as that depends on thousands of parts & processes, which are extremely difficult to forecast
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) November 19, 2018
The Tesla Pickup Truck will be a 6-seater big truck with an option for 400 to 500 miles of range.
Telsa could make a 10–12-passenger version of the Model X as a minibus.
Brian Wang is a Futurist Thought Leader and a popular Science blogger with 1 million readers per month. His blog Nextbigfuture.com is ranked #1 Science News Blog. It covers many disruptive technology and trends including Space, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Medicine, Anti-aging Biotechnology, and Nanotechnology.
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