Tesla Sheds Light On Pending Gigafactory

Today Tesla Motors released graphics and a brief written statement divulging more about its much-anticipated “Gigafactory” to produce batteries for its future cars.

Chief among the future cars is the “Gen 3” sedan which Tesla rep Alexis Georgeson said should see 200 miles EPA-rated range on the sticker, and cost around $35,000.

This car will take lessons learned from the Model S, and incorporate them into a model intended to be competitive with the likes of a BMW 3-Series, says Tesla.

It has been called “Model E” by speculators but Georgeson said the company calls it Gen 3.

To get the batteries needed for this, and other vehicles, Tesla says it is still deciding where to locate the massive battery facility.

States in consideration are Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas and the final location will be announced later, says Tesla.

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Following is the brief message Tesla issued:

As we at Tesla reach for our goal of producing a mass market electric car in approximately three years, we have an opportunity to leverage our projected demand for lithium ion batteries to reduce their cost faster than previously thought possible. In cooperation with strategic battery manufacturing partners, we’re planning to build a large scale factory that will allow us to achieve economies of scale and minimize costs through innovative manufacturing, reduction of logistics waste, optimization of co-located processes and reduced overhead.

The Gigafactory is designed to reduce cell costs much faster than the status quo and, by 2020, produce more lithium ion batteries annually than were produced worldwide in 2013. By the end of the first year of volume production of our mass market vehicle, we expect the Gigafactory will have driven down the per kWh cost of our battery pack by more than 30 percent. Here are some details about what the Gigafactory will look like.

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Graphics also supplied by Tesla also tell the story.

Plans are big, and the plant intended to churn out 35-plus gigawatt-hours of batteries per year is seen as vital in Tesla’s plans to get economies of scale necessary to produce its affordable cars at acceptable profits.

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