Tesla announces its next auto factory will be near Berlin

Tesla chooses Berlin for European gigafactory

Tesla chooses Berlin for European gigafactory

As it turns out Tesla-superowner Elon Musk had considered building a battery gigafactory here, but Brexit meant he chose Germany instead.

In its Q3 earnings report, the firm announced that its European branch would be up and running in 2021 and that it would build its popular Model 3 saloon vehicle there, as well as the forthcoming Model Y crossover SUV offering.

Who would have thought when Tesla started selling the Model S in 2012 that less than 8 years later it would have a shiny new factory in China and plans to bring EV manufacturing to Germany, the heart of automobile manufacturing in Europe?

He said: "It makes sense to have (a factory) in the United Kingdom once we're producing more than 500,000 units..." Musk announced the Berlin decision at a auto industry awards ceremony on Wednesday night hosted by the German tabloid Bild.

"I'm happy that Elon is, let's say, pulling us, but I think the German industry is really now strongly investing", said Volkswagen CEO Herbert Diess, speaking alongside Musk at Tuesday's event. In Berlin, Tesla will have also a design center. Combined, they generate annual turnover of £82bn and are responsible for 14.4pc of the UK's goods exports: 80pc of the 1.5m cars built in Britain are sold overseas, mostly to Europe.

Elon Musk has fueled hopes that he would bring a Tesla R&D base, if not a factory, to the United Kingdom for years now, but it would seem that he has had a change of heart - and that Brexit had something to do with the u-turn.

Britain's business minister Andrea Leadsom said the government was aware that the uncertainty over Brexit is causing investment to be put hold and that is why the upcoming election is needed.

However, industry chiefs have largely backed the German government's insistence on keeping the single market intact.

German automaker Volkswagen, which last week began mass production of its ID.3 electric auto, welcomed rival Tesla's decision to build the factory on its home turf.

Reportedly, around 10,000 new jobs will be created through the investment and Tesla is already seeking employees (see Tesla website here). BER, which was started in 2006, still stands empty due to a seemingly endless series of problems and mismanagement.

'We definitely need to move faster than the airport, that's for sure, ' said Musk.

Outlays on labor alone will amount to just a tenth of Tesla's workforce spending in its home state of California, helping operations in China generate gross margins in the low- to mid-30 per cent range, Jonas said.

The effort has been a long time coming.

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