As Tesla falls further and further behind in its quest to produce 10,000 Model 3 sedans a week by the end of next year, WSJ reported Sunday that, after months of talks with local government officials, Tesla has finally received permission to open a factory in Shanghai, one of China’s designated “free trade zones.”
This is a horrific move for Tesla. For two reasons. First, the made in America CAN DO brand of Tesla is a large reason people are willing to pay the premium price. Second, the Chinese will steal every last scrap of technology and start producing “ChinaLa’s” within months. They stole GM’s ECO engine that the company spent hundreds of millions to develop. If Tesla goes near China they are making a company ending mistake.
Instead, even MEXICO would be a better solution. Mexico has been producing the Big 3 cars for decades. But then, Tesla would not be “special”
Tesla is looking at the price points for building cars with american labor and realizing it just doesn’t work. Even in Japan cars are made mostly by robots. It works, but the price end point for the cars becomes too high for regular Americans. Because our workers require pensions, and health care and doctors demand $800,000 a year salaries not $50,000 a year salaries like in Germany or $10,000 a year salaries in China. It’s the rape by doctors that is one of the biggest horrors that is dragging down the whole nation. But the reason for that is they have set up a system that makes being a doctor way too hard.
Tesla is reportedly having woes with its robotic welders. Things need to be sent back, re-done. They lack the vision to simplify their designs. They need strong re-thing to design a car NOT JUST that can run but can be built logically and efficiently and also can be worked on logicially. Something even American cars lack.
The Tesla China strategy appears to be to target Shanghai and Beijing markets. By building within these zones and not selling outside them they avoid the 25% import tax. Also Tesla has managed a HUGE COUP by allowing their factories NOT to be Chinese-American partnerships with 51% chinese ownership. These deals have SUNK GM because they stole all their intellectual property. For Tesla, IP is everything. So this is a huge win. Maybe Musk is smart after all if he intends these cars NOT for the American market.
A Tesla car’s sticker price is already about 50% more expensive in Chinathan in the US. Nevertheless, its fortunes in the country to date have been promising. Sales to the country more than tripled between 2016 and 2017, hitting $1.1 billion—one-seventh of its overall revenue. It occupies about 8.6% of China’s EV market, according to Bloomberg—local rivals make up the remainder. It’s achieved this by targeting China’s ultra-rich in major cities like Beijing and Shanghai. Chinese social media giant Tencent invested $1.8 billion in a stake in Tesla earlier this year—leading some analysts to speculate that a deeper partnership may be in the works.
Me? I’m painting my 20 year old honda. Texas sun gobbled up that paint in short order. But under that its all running like the day she was born. Number of repairs and break downs in 20 years? Just one. For some reason my SRS (airbag) light came on. So the shut it off with a switch on a computer. That’s it! But HONDA has abandoned it’s sport car range we can only hope that its HYDROGEN car gets produced because THAT is the right technology we should be choosing not battery cells! Run out of Hydrogen, just go to the pump. And new tech is allowing tanks to store denser hydrogen so they can be smaller. So they can get that 300 mile range on one tank yet be easily filled up.
Which brings me to my final beef with Tesla. Why cant you swap out batteries at a fillign station and poof you are filled up? Why? becuase they are damn expensive. They need a “club” system where the system verifies who you are and also the age and condition of your batteries. Six ten pound batteries could be pulled out and replaced in short order. It would take about as long as filling a tank. The car would still have a main battery for another 60 pounds of battery, deep in the floor / frame. But that way, when you are low, you’d immediately get another 100-150 miles of range. Why don’t they do it? We swap out propane tanks for god sakes and those cost 50 bucks each. and those RUST!
Anyways, Tesla. You were a government funded car rebate launched inefficient monstrosity venture capital launched nonsense now facing reality. I hope he makes it, but without China please.