Leaked photos said to show partly completed Model 3 cars at Tesla's Shanghai factory

Source:Global Times Published: 2019/9/19 21:02:10

View of a Tesla store in Shanghai File photo: IC

What are said to be leaked photos of the interior of Tesla's Shanghai Gigafactory 3 reveal that car bodies for the Model 3 have rolled off the assembly line. The factory is set to start mass production by year-end as planned, but quicker moves can win the US electric carmaker a better position in China's market, an analyst said.

The factory's general assembly building has started conducting initial assembly runs of its made-in-China Model 3 sedan, showed a picture shared by Sina Weibo user ChangyanCY, an auto industry information blogger, on Wednesday.

Simply titled "Shanghai Factory," the photo showed at least three Model 3 cars being assembled. The partly built electric sedans are being assembled for trial runs, a tech blogger named Xiaozhi commented.

Other photos circulating on the internet showed partly assembled cars from various angles. The sample units are reportedly on track to be completed before next month. 

It has not been proven, however, that the photos were actually leaked from the interior of Gigafactory 3, and no pictures of fully assembled Model 3 cars have been leaked.

The purported Gigafactory 3 interior leaks indicate that the facility is on track to start producing 3,000 Model 3 cars per week by the end of this year, Wu Shuocheng, a Shanghai-based independent car analyst, told the Global Times on Thursday.

Tesla's Gigafactory 3 complex was reported this week to have passed comprehensive pre-production inspections.

A new recruitment notice posted on Tesla's WeChat account on Thursday showed that the facility is recruiting more workers and technicians for car production.

As both traditional strong auto brands and emerging local new-energy vehicle makers are accelerating to compete in China market, Tesla will go through a crucial strategic period in the coming one or two years, Wu said.

If there are more options for Chinese consumers, Tesla's prospects will be more uncertain. For the electric car producer, the faster it moves in the China market, the better position it will gain, Wu added.

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