Tesla is Bringing in Engineers From Shanghai to Help Ramp Up Production Capacity at its California Factory

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【Summary】Tesla is bringing in engineers and production staff from overseas to help boost production capacity at its factory in California to meet growing demand for its vehicles. Approximately 200 automation and control engineers from Tesla’s factory in Shanghai will assist the automaker in making upgrades to its Fremont factory to boost output.

FutureCar Staff    Nov 01, 2022 10:00 AM PT
Tesla is Bringing in Engineers From Shanghai to Help Ramp Up Production Capacity at its California Factory
Tesla's factory in Fremont, CA is being upgraded to produce more vehicles.

As electric automaker Tesla prepares for growth over the next several years, the company recently upgraded its factory in Shanghai to produce more vehicles. Tesla is now focusing on its California assembly plant and is bringing in engineers and production staff from China for assistance in getting the plant ready to increase output, Bloomberg reported on Tuesday citing people familiar with Tesla's plans.

Approximately 200 workers from China include automation and control engineers will assist in getting the Fremont, California factory ready to boost output. The plant currently produces the Model S, X, Y and 3 vehicles. The assignments in the U.S. will last around three months, according to the people that spoke with Bloomberg.

Tesla delivered a record high 83,135 vehicles in China in September after improvements at its Shanghai factory. The upgrades in China included machinery maintenance and improvements overseen by automation and control engineers and took about five weeks to complete. 

Tesla's factory in China is now capable of producing up to 1 million vehicles a year, up from 500,000. The company's California plant can produce roughly 650,000 cars a year.

In July, Tesla had to temporarily suspend most vehicle production in Shanghai to perform the upgrades to the plant. 

The recent improvements at Tesla's factory in Shanghai have reduced waiting times for vehicle deliveries in China, which is the world's biggest auto market and an important one for Tesla to maintain its profitability. Current wait times for the Model Y are just 1 to 4 weeks for customers in China. 

However, for U.S. customers looking to purchase a Model Y SUV, the delivery window is between Dec 2022 and April 2023. For the Model 3 sedan, the estimated delivery for U.S. customers is Dec 2022.

Tesla's Fremont factory has reached a production capacity of 12,000 vehicles per week and plans to produce 14,000 vehicles per week in the near future.

Earlier this year, Tesla began production of the Model Y at its factory in Germany. These vehicles will be sold to customers in Europe. Tesla is also expanding its newest factory in Austin, Texas to produce more vehicles, where the company is now based after moving its headquarters from California in December of last year.

Tesla delivered 343,830 vehicles worldwide last quarter, the highest number in the company's history. But the company is still dealing with logistics issues shipping cars that are delaying customer deliveries. 

During the company's Q3 webcast on Oct 2, Tesla warned that it's increasingly challenging to secure vehicle transportation capacity at a reasonable cost during these peak logistics weeks.  

The automaker is aiming for 50% average growth over the next several years which will require the company to significantly boost production. But with four global factories with the ability of churning out hundreds of thousands of vehicles a year each, Tesla will have the production capacity in place to reach its goals.

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