As the Model 3 continues to entice electric car enthusiasts and reservation holders across the globe, Tesla appears to be setting the stage for a massive rollout of vehicles from its Fremont factory. Last month, local news from the city of Lathrop in CA revealed that Tesla is constructing an enormous facility in the area. Recent drone footage has revealed that the construction of the 870,000 sq ft building is seeing steady progress.
Earlier this month, footage of the yet-to-be-announced facility revealed that the walls and framework of the building seemed to be completed. The first sections of the facility’s roof were also being constructed. In a recent update, drone footage revealed that a significant part of the building has now been covered with roofing material. Considering that the time difference between the two drone flybys was just eight days, Tesla’s progress in the facility’s construction appears to be rather quick.
Tesla has not disclosed the purpose of the 870,000 sq ft facility, though speculations are abounding that it could be used as a distribution center. That said, it is evident that the facility’s sides have a line of openings that appear to be large enough to accommodate semi-trailers. Thus, there is a good chance that the building, when complete, would feature numerous loading bays.
The addition of the 870,000 sq ft building in Lathrop is set to increase the electric car maker’s footprint in the city. Even before the rumored distribution center started construction, after all, Tesla already owned a 500,000 sq ft building in Lathrop, as noted by local news agency Manteca Bulletin. The company also has long-term leases on several more facilities in the area. Moreover, the city is also the site of one of Tesla’s loading hubs — a location that has caught the interest of some of the company’s skeptics. A Tesla spokesperson explained the nature of its activities in the area.
“We use Lathrop as a loading hub for cars being shipped to other locations for delivery to customers. As our deliveries increase, we’re obviously going to have more cars there,” a Tesla spokesperson said.
Tesla’s construction of its 870,000 sq ft Lathrop facility comes amidst the Model 3’s continued production ramp and ongoing global exhibition. While the company recorded a record number of production and deliveries for the vehicle in Q3, expectations are high that Tesla’s figures in the fourth quarter would be even better, considering the upgrades to Gigafactory 1 from Panasonic and Grohmann automation as well as an ongoing production push in the Fremont factory.
Tesla has started advertising the Model 3 to reservation holders in territories outside North America. Over the past week, Tesla has brought the Model 3 to Europe and Asia, saturating areas such as Germany, France, Portugal, China, and Japan, among others. Elon Musk even mentioned on Twitter that deliveries of the Model 3 in China, a key market for electric cars, could start as early as March or April 2019.
Watch the recent footage of Tesla’s new Lathrop facility in the video below.