Tesla and Stellantis-owned Comau Robotics are setting up a new series of automation equipment for manufacturing at Tesla’s Fremont Factory in Northern California. According to permits submitted by Tesla to the City of Fremont, Tesla will begin to anchor and install Comau’s products that entail highly automated and effective manufacturing techniques that are designed for electric vehicles.
According to permits submitted to Fremont, Tesla plans to install some new automation equipment at its Fremont Factory. Fremont is the only manufacturing facility where Tesla builds all four models of its currently available electric lineup. The company has made great strides to increase manufacturing efficiency through the use of automation. While CEO Elon Musk admitted in the past that he overlooked the importance of humans operating some portions of a manufacturing line, Tesla still understands that making all parts of the production process efficient will help the company reach its lofty production and delivery goals, especially as demand continues to increase.
Upon initial examination of Tesla’s application, it states that Comau, an Italian manufacturer of manufacturing products, will be providing Tesla will the machines. Interestingly, Comau is a subsidiary of parent company Stellantis, to who Tesla has been selling regulatory credits to for the past few years. Technically, Tesla has been selling these credits to Fiat-Chrysler Automobiles (FCA). Still, Stellantis recently purchased FCA, along with several other notable automotive brands like Jeep, Dodge, Maserati, Alfa Romeo, and Mopar.
It was announced earlier this week by Stellantis CEO Carlos Tavares that the company would no longer need to purchase the regulatory credits from Tesla as it could reach CO2 emissions goals on its own. “With the electrical technology that PSA brought to Stellantis, we will autonomously meet carbon dioxide emission regulations as early as this year. Thus, we will not need to call on European CO2 credits, and FCA will no longer have to pool with Tesla or anyone,” Tavares said.
Comau, while owned by the relatively new Stellantis, has been in the business of manufacturing equipment since 1984. Earlier this year, Comau also began collaborating with Rockwell Automation in an effort to simplify robotic integration for automotive manufacturers. The partnership between Rockwell and Comau was announced on April 20th, 2021, and should expand the number of robotic applications that are rooted in the automotive industry.
Comau did not return our request for a comment on the partnership.
Yes, excessive automation at Tesla was a mistake. To be precise, my mistake. Humans are underrated.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) April 13, 2018
Interestingly, Rockwell opened an electric vehicle innovation center in Silicon Valley in 2019. The company’s launch of the site was announced in a video, where Rockwell included several pictures of Tesla electric vehicles. Still, no official partnership between Tesla and Rockwell is evident at the current time.
Comau’s expertise in electric vehicles goes deep and has been for things like battery manufacturing and e-Drive manufacturing. The company has several types of systems that are effective for either low or high-volume production, and its proven and lengthy history of experience in the manufacturing sector with robotics could help Tesla keep up with demand developments as the company continues to rage forward with increased production rates.