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Tesla successfully secures 9.3-million sq-ft land for Gigafactory 3

Recent reports from local Chinese news outlets indicate that Tesla has successfully acquired a 9.3 million-square-foot plot of land at the Shanghai Lingang Equipment Industrial Zone. The area will be the site of the electric car maker’s upcoming Gigafactory 3, which is expected to produce 500,000 electric cars per year when complete. 

The land transfer agreement was signed on Wednesday, October 17, with Tesla representatives including VP of worldwide sales Robin Ren sealing the deal with the Shanghai Economics and Information Committee, the Shanghai Lingang Area Development Administration, and the Lingang Group. Addressing the agreement, Ren noted that securing the site bodes well for Tesla’s mission as a whole.  

“Tesla’s mission is to accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy not only through all-electric vehicles, but also scalable clean energy generation and storage products. Securing this site in Shanghai, Tesla’s first Gigafactory outside of the United States, is an important milestone for what will be our next advanced, sustainably developed manufacturing site,” Ren noted.

Neither Tesla nor Shanghai authorities have commented on the price of Gigafactory 3’s land. That said, the Shanghai Bureau of Planning and Land Resources revealed on Wednesday that a plot of land matching Gigafactory 3’s 9.3 million-square-foot size was sold at an auction for 973 million yuan, or the equivalent of $140 million.

Gigafactory 3 would fit in with other facilities in the Lingang Industrial Zone. The area is strategically located along the coast, around 47 miles southeast of Shanghai’s center. The area is also accessible by multiple road systems, allowing companies with facilities operating in the area to have no logistical issues. Several automakers are present in the Lingang Industrial Zone as well, with some companies reportedly testing vehicles in the area.

An artist’s rendering of the Lingang area. [Source: Shanghai Daily]

In terms of the size of land, Tesla’s site for Gigafactory 1 in Nevada still dwarfs the 9.3 million-square-foot area acquired by the company in Shanghai. Tesla, after all, has acquired close to 3,000 acres in the Nevada site. The size of the land acquired by the electric car maker in Shanghai closely matches the estimated final footprint of Gigafactory 1, though, considering that the company expects the Nevada facility to cover a total area of 10 million square feet once it’s complete.

The progress of Gigafactory 3 has been particularly quick. The acquisition of the land, for one, only took three months. Tesla signed a deal with Shanghai authorities to build its first factory outside the United States in July, and by October 17, the facility’s site had already been delisted by Shanghai authorities. The speed of the project goes in line with Tesla’s statements in its Q3 production and delivery report, when the company stated that it was accelerating the construction of Gigafactory 3.

Tesla has ambitious plans for Gigafactory 3. According to Elon Musk, the Shanghai facility would be capable of manufacturing both electric cars and batteries. The company’s initial timeline expects the factory to start producing vehicles within two years after the facility starts construction. Once fully operational, Tesla estimates Gigafactory 3 to produce as many as 500,000 vehicles per year, the majority of which would be sold to the Chinese market.

Tesla successfully secures 9.3-million sq-ft land for Gigafactory 3
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