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Tesla Reaches a Major Milestone, Builds its 1,000,000th Vehicle

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【Summary】​Electric automaker Tesla has reached a major milestone this week by building its one millionth vehicle. Tesla Chief Executive made the announcement in a Twitter post on Monday night.

FutureCar Staff    Mar 10, 2020 3:50 PM PT
Tesla Reaches a Major Milestone, Builds its 1,000,000th Vehicle
Tesla's 1 millionth vehicle was a Model Y crossover build at the automaker's factory in Fremont, California.

Electric automaker Tesla has reached a major milestone this week by building its one millionth vehicle. Tesla Chief Executive made the announcement in a Twitter post on Monday night.

While building 1 million vehicles is a great achievement for any legacy automaker, Tesla's accomplishment appears even greater, as the automaker builds only fully-electric vehicles, which were once dismissed as a niche product by the industry. Now, Tesla finds itself leading the auto industry's worldwide push towards electrification.

With its one-millionth EV, Tesla cements its place as the world's biggest electric car maker and rival automakers are racing to catch up. The Model Y joins the Tesla Model S, mass-market Model 3 sedan, as well as the Model X SUV in Tesla's current lineup. 

The 1,000,000 vehicle to roll off the assembly line at Tesla's Fremont, California factory was a Model Y crossover, the company's forth mainstream model, which Tesla will begin delivering to reservation holders in the upcoming weeks.

The Model Y has the potential to be a big hit for Tesla. Musk said that the Model Y might outsell all of Tesla's other vehicles combined and he may be right.

The compact SUV and crossover segment in the U.S. is one of the most popular with consumers as traditional sedans fall out of favor. U.S. automaker Ford chose a crossover as its first electric model to compete with Tesla with the Mustang-inspired Mach-E. The Mach-E will be available by the end of the year.

Tesla's surge in popularity has led to a new crop of electric vehicles being produced or in development by other companies, including the BMW Concept  i4, Audi e-tron, Hyundai Kona electric and Mercedes Benz EQC, as automakers look to follow Tesla's lead in electrification.

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Tesla employees celebrate the first production version of the Model S in 2012 at Tesla's Fremont, California factory. (Photo: AP)

Many industry analysts predicted that Tesla would face tough competition from more established automakers once they began to introduce their own electric models. However, that appears to be no longer the case, as other automakers are now emulating Tesla hoping for some of the same success.

For example, Ford's first electric vehicle the Mach-E includes a center-mounted touch screen which appears to be borrowed from the Tesla Model S, a vehicle that first went on sale in 2012.

Tesla's industry might can be measured with its soaring stock price in 2020. Tesla's stock price topped $900 last month following two strong and profitable quarters to close out 2019 and high-demand for the Model 3 in China. 

After the close of trading today, Tesla stock price was $645.33 a share and its market cap hovered around $118 billion. This comes after the markets experienced their worst performance since 2008 amid fears of the Coronavirus and the fastest drop in oil prices in over 30 years. 

At $118.9 billion, Tesla's market cap is higher than both U.S. automakers General Motors ($38.75B) and Ford Motor Company ($24.9B) combined.

Tesla doesn't have to worry about oil prices too much since it builds electric cars. The company was founded with a mission "to accelerate the world's transition to sustainable energy" and to prove that people don't need to compromise performance to drive an electric car. 

Now it looks as though that work has paid off for Tesla. However, the electric automaker is not resting on its laurels. The company is still expanding globally.

Tesla began delivering the first China-made Model 3s to customers in China in January. The vehicles were built at the automaker's Shanghai gigafactory, Tesla's first overseas assembly plant. The new factory, which is wholly owned by Tesla, gives the company a foothold in the world's biggest auto market without the threat of steep import tariffs.

Tesla is also building its third factory in Germany where the company will build vehicles for the European market which will help sustain the company's momentum globally.

It took Tesla eight years to produce its 1,000,000 vehicle, but reaching 2 million might take much less time. Musk is aiming to produce up to 500,000 vehicles a year at its Shanghai factory alone.

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