According to a Tweet from Elon Musk, Tesla has now manufactured more than 3 million vehicles. Musk congratulated Gigafactory Shanghai for topping the 1 million Mark.
Gigafactory Shanghai assembles Model 3 and Model Y vehicles for the Asian and European markets. In China, Tesla faced recent challenges like COVID-19 related lockdowns that forced it to limit operations at Gigafactory Shanghai. It also faced pushback from the Chinese government, which limited the presence of Tesla vehicles at government-operated facilities due to concerns that their cameras could be used for espionage. Tesla denies that its cameras are active in China but built a datacenter to allay China’s concerns anyway.
Tesla is currently expanding Gigafactory Shanghai to increase its manufacturing capacity. It plans to manufacture as many as 21,000 vehicles a week when the expansion is complete.
Tesla has seen impressive growth in the past couple of years, including setting a string of quarterly records for vehicle deliveries in 2020, 2021, and the first half of 2022. It managed to get approval for a limited opening of Gigafactory Berlin despite the headaches that regulatory red tape and environmentalist groups likely caused Elon Musk. Gigafactory Texas also opened this year.
Its most recent setback involved a reduced quarterly profit in Q3 2022. It sold millions of dollars in bitcoin, likely to keep revenue from looking worse. Elon Musk called Gigafactory Berlin and Gigafactory Texas “money furnaces” due to ongoing supply chain and production issues.
Tesla had to pause taking new orders of Model 3 Long Range vehicles in the United States and Canada due to a backlog that already extends into 2023. The Model 3 Long Range may qualify for new EV tax credits by meeting battery and critical mineral criteria. Tesla’s deals to source some raw materials like nickel from countries with strong environmental regulations, like the United States and Australia, may help. However, the Model 3 will have to cost less than $55,000 to qualify.
Tesla has attempted to solve this issue by manufacturing more of its own parts, including breaking ground on a new battery factory in Fremont and floating the possibility of buying a semiconductor chip plant. It already controls enough of its own manufacturing to earn the Model 3 high marks on Cars.com’s list of top American-Made vehicles but has still fallen short due to supply chain problems.
Despite the challenges, Tesla has established itself as the top manufacturer of electric vehicles by number of EVs produced and delivered. Tesla stock had gained significantly over the past couple of years, even earning inclusion in the S&P 500 in 2020, mostly due to its strong number of deliveries. Yes, some other major automakers are starting to make inroads in EVs and produce more vehicles every year. However, Tesla has made more EVs than any other automaker with more than 3 million vehicles produced.