A recent report from German media has pointed to a surprisingly optimistic scenario for Tesla and its vehicle manufacturing goals for Europe. According to sources who are reportedly familiar with the electric car maker’s plans, Gigafactory Berlin could produce up to 2 million vehicles per year. That’s over twice the output of Volkswagen’s Wolfsburg Plant, one of the largest automotive production facilities in the industry.
The report was related by German news media outlet Focus.de, which stated that Tesla is expecting a market of about 12 million electric vehicles in Europe. While Tesla reportedly did not respond to an inquiry from the publication, a 2 million a year run rate would allow the electric car maker to command about 16% of Europe’s electric car segment. That’s a significant part of the EV pie in the region, and it will likely benefit Tesla’s numbers greatly.
So far, the factory’s building applications refer to a target run rate of 500,000 vehicles per year. That being said, Gigafactory Berlin is located in a massive plot of land, and coupled with Tesla’s battery tech and manufacturing innovations in recent years, a facility that could produce 500,000 vehicles per year would likely take up only a fraction of the site’s overall area.
Gigafactory Berlin will be built on a 300 hectare plot of land, after all, which means that there is ample space for other manufacturing related facilities to be established on the site. Gigafactory Shanghai, for example, is only being built on an 86 hectare area, but the Model 3 and Model Y factory on the site would likely exceed 500,000 vehicles per year when fully ramped. With this in mind, perhaps references to Giga Berlin’s 2 million a year production rate are not too farfetched.
Gigafactory Berlin is expected to start operations next year, with the facility producing the Model Y for the local market. This should give Tesla an edge against competitors in the region, since vehicles that are manufactured in the Grünheide based plant will be built with Silicon Valley tech and the craftsmanship of Germany’s veteran auto industry. This is a pretty formidable combination to beat.
Teslas are already excellent vehicles. However, inasmuch as they lead the pack in terms of tech, there are still areas of improvement that are present in the company’s vehicles. During a review of the Model Y back in May, for example, German news publication Spiegel Online argued that the crossover was almost perfect since its tech and performance are weighed down by its build quality, which still falls behind Das Auto. This gap is poised to disappear, however. After all, there is a pretty good chance that the Giga Berlin made Model Y will be built with the same standards and quality as other German automobiles.