Tesla permits reveal plans for Model Y production line upgrades in Fremont factory

Tesla's Fremont factory, where all Model 3 are produced. (Photo: Tesla)

Permits submitted by Tesla to the city of Fremont suggests that the electric car maker intends to build additional production lines for the Model Y. Other permits show the company planning to upgrade its paint shop, while rerouting more than half of a mile of underground fire protection mains in the facility.

Tesla submitted these applications to the City of Fremont, California, on April 3. The integration of new production lines will increase the ramp and build rate of the new Model Y crossover. Tesla’s application lists the project description as “Installation of Model Y conveyance platform for phase #3.”

Credit: City of Fremont

The company is preparing for an increased build rate of the all-electric crossover, considering it has now introduced its fourth mass-produced vehicle to its lineup, the Model Y. Tesla has been able to utilize Model 3 production lines for the first productions of the Model Y as the two vehicles share 75% of the same parts.

While the Model 3 is currently the company’s most popular vehicle, the Model Y expected to see even higher delivery numbers than its sibling since it’s competing in the crossover segment, which is far larger than the sedan market. If the permits are any indication, it appears that Tesla plans to utilize separate production lines for the Model 3 and Model X, which could lead to a faster production ramp and faster delivery windows.

Credit: City of Fremont

Tesla also is planning to get its paint shop up and running as another application stated, “Utility infrastructure development in preparation for restoring former body paint operations.” The Fremont paint shop was a bottleneck for Model 3 production in the second quarter of 2018. After the company released a video of a “robot udder” painting the sedan in September 2018, it seemed Tesla had make some headway in solving its paint issues. CEO Elon Musk has admitted that the paint shop is one of the areas where the Fremont facility could improve, and it seems that the company is putting in efforts to make the shop more efficient.

The final application submitted to Fremont’s local government was the utilization of a “reroute approximately 2,800 feet of underground fire main around GA (general assembly) 4.5.”

Credit: City of Fremont

Fremont’s GA4 production line was effectively an outdoor sprung structure that the company placed just outside the main building for the production of the Model 3 in late 2018. While Tesla planned to open up a fifth production line in September 2019 after applying for permits to begin building the new line, the company has been advised to provide documents that relate to the location’s ability to handle stormwater drainage.

Thus, Tesla has creatively applied for the new GA4.5 assembly line to be equipped with the necessary fire protection equipment to begin operation.

Joey Klender: Transportation Writer | Penn State Alum | Future World Series of Poker Bracelet Holder 🚀 🛰 ☀️ 🚘 🧠 🕳
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