Tesla shares have risen 115% in the past three months, in part due to growing anticipation of what will be announced at the company’s battery event. Investors are hopeful that new batteries and improved manufacturing processes can give Tesla a competitive advantage over a host of new electric vehicles competing with traditional automakers and start-ups.
Tesla is also moving away from individual parts riveted together on an assembly line and from a single component made using the world’s largest aluminum casting machine. Musk has long talked about generating cost savings by automating the entire production line, what he has in recent years called an “alien dreadnought” that would help him reinvent auto manufacturing processes.
But on Twitter On Monday night, Musk noted how difficult it was to move quickly to mass production, saying he did not expect the advertised products to reach mass production until 2022.
An important note on the Tesla Battery Day unveiling tomorrow. This affects long-term production, especially the Semi, Cybertruck and Roadster, but what we are announcing will not reach serious high-volume production until 2022.
– Elon Musk (@elonmusk) September 21, 2020
“The extreme difficulty of changing the production of new technologies is not well understood. It’s 1000% to 10,000% harder than making a few prototypes, ”Musk wrote in a follow-up tweet. “The machine that makes the machine is much harder than the machine itself. ”
While Musk says the challenges Tesla faces are not well understood, his words likely ring true to other automakers. Automakers typically spend years prototyping new designs to solve manufacturing problems before they reach mass production.