Elon Musk provided intriguing details about Tesla’s highly anticipated next-generation vehicle, internally codenamed "Redwood." Musk emphasized this vehicle's impact, not just in its design but more significantly in its manufacturing process. The details came during the fourth quarter earnings call, and despite cautioning listeners that the call was not about future production, the CEO gave us a lot to talk about.
He stated, "This is a revolutionary manufacturing system significantly, far more advanced than any other automotive manufacturing system in the world by a significant margin." Musk continued, “I am confident that once it is going, it will be head and shoulders above any other manufacturing technology that exists anywhere in the world. It's next level.”
Production Timeline and Locations
Acknowledging his tendency for optimism, especially regarding timelines, Musk conveyed a realistic yet confident tone, “our current schedule shows that we will start production towards the end of 2025. So sometime in the second half. That's just what our current schedule says. But there's a lot of new technology like a tremendous amount of new revolutionary manufacturing technology here.”
The first manufacturing location for the "Redwood" will be Tesla's Gigafactory and headquarters in Austin, Texas. The new platform was originally set for Mexico. Musk explained that moving locations was strategic, “The reason I wanted to put this new revolutionary manufacturing line at Giga Texas was because we need the engineers to be living on the line. This is not sort of off the shelf, just works type of thing. And it's just a lot easier for Tesla engineering to live online if it's in Austin versus elsewhere.” Following Austin, the second production site is planned in Mexico, with a third location outside North America being considered for identification by late this year or early next.
Musk delved into the complexities of Tesla's manufacturing process for the upcoming next-generation vehicle, highlighting the challenges and innovations involved. Musk acknowledged the unpredictable nature of the manufacturing S-curve, noting, "So it's always difficult to predict what that S-curve of manufacturing looks like. So it always starts off real slow, and then it grows exponentially." He emphasized the difficulty in forecasting the intermediate stages of this curve and refrained from making specific predictions about unit volume for the upcoming year.
Tesla's Next Growth Wave
Tesla's next vehicle will be manufactured in 2025
Musk further explained the uniqueness of the manufacturing equipment required for the next-gen vehicle, stating, "There's a lot of specialized machines that make the machine for a next-gen vehicle. So these are not machines you can just order from anyone. You have to design a machine that has never existed to build a car in a way that has never existed." This innovative approach underlines Tesla's commitment to redefining the manufacturing process. Musk emphasized the company's focus on ensuring the successful execution of its next growth wave, driven by the next-gen vehicle, energy storage, full self-driving, and other projects. This strategy is a testament to Tesla's dedication to pushing the boundaries of technology and manufacturing in the automotive industry.
Tesla's CFO, Vaibhav Taneja, added context to the company's growth trajectory. He indicated that Tesla is currently between two major growth waves: the first driven by the global expansion of Models 3 and Y, and the next anticipated to be initiated by the next-gen vehicle. Taneja highlighted that in 2024, volume growth will be lower as the team focuses on the launch of this new platform.
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Tesla's reintroduction of the Model 3 Performance continues to inch closer, and just like the refreshed Model 3 and the Cybertruck, every peek gives us some more hints and builds more excitement. A recent observation of a partially covered Tesla Model 3 Performance prototype revealed the new Sport seats designed for improved comfort.
Posted on X by Nic Cruz Patane, the upgraded Model 3 Performance was sighted in Santa Monica, where the vehicle's engineering prototype displayed minimal window tinting, offering a sneak peek at the vehicle's improved seating. The Sport seats, resembling dedicated racing bucket seats, significantly depart from the current Model 3 seating options.
Sport Seats Coming to Other Models?
Tesla's initiative to incorporate Sport seats into the Model 3 Performance hints at broader plans to equip its high-performance models, including the Model S Plaid, Model X Plaid, and Model Y Performance, with similar seating options. This move will elevate the driving experience across Tesla's performance vehicle range.
These seats were also spotted a few weeks ago by enthusiast Fidel Grandez. Initially thought to be designated for the Model S Plaid, these Sport seats have found their rightful place in the Model 3 Performance, aligning with Tesla's vision for a performance-focused yet more affordable electric sedan.
New Wheels and Front Lip
In addition to the seats, the Model 3 Performance is rumored to showcase a suite of enhancements. Another angle gives a little bit of an outline of the new front lower splitter. Other aesthetic and functional upgrades include "Warp" 20-inch wheels, advanced braking systems, and revised suspension components.
Tesla has been testing the Model 3 Performance prototypes for a few months, signaling that initial production could be underway in North America. This step is crucial as Tesla aims to reintroduce the Performance trim to the market, having temporarily removed it from their lineup. The reintroduction is timely, considering the evolving landscape of EV incentives in the United States. While the official launch date remains under wraps, anticipation builds for the Model 3 Performance's debut, expected in the first half of 2024.
Kim Kardashian showcased her Cybertruck with the caption "cool carpool mom" to her 364 million followers on Instagram. The A-list celebrity and billionaire is well known for her knack for staying at the forefront of trends, making this one image a powerful endorsement for Tesla. The picture of one of the most influential celebrities of our time picking the Cybertruck as her distinctive vehicle speaks volumes about the brand's penetration into popular culture and its appeal to a broad demographic, including those who value style, innovation, and sustainability.
The Power of Celebrity Influence
Kim Kardashian's influence cannot be overstated. Her every move is watched and often emulated by fans around the globe. Her journey from reality TV star to billionaire entrepreneur has been marked by a series of successful ventures in fashion, beauty, and technology investments, making her a model of modern business acumen. Kardashian's ability to turn personal endorsements into significant trends is unparalleled, making her engagement with Tesla's Cybertruck a notable moment for the company.
Kardashian's influence extends far beyond mere product endorsement. Her strategic use of social media to connect with her audience has transformed how brands interact with consumers. She creates a personal connection that can sway consumer behavior by sharing her life, interests, and choices, including her vehicle preferences. Her endorsement of the Cybertruck can significantly enhance Tesla's brand visibility and desirability, particularly among consumers who may not have previously considered an electric vehicle.
The Celebrity Cybertruck list is growing
Pharrell, Lady Gaga, Jay Leno, and now Kim Kardashian.
Kardashian has recently joined the exclusive circle of celebrities seen driving the Cybertruck, a group that boasts names like Pharrell, Lady Gaga, Jay Leno, and not to forget Elon Musk himself (who, aside from being Tesla's CEO, commands a staggering following of over 370 million on X). Each of these stars wields significant influence, captivating audiences that range from thousands to millions globally.
Sustainability Meets Style
Moreover, Kardashian's endorsement comes at a time when the importance of sustainable living and eco-friendly choices is increasingly recognized. Her choice of an electric vehicle over traditional gasoline-powered cars sends a strong message about the importance of environmental responsibility, aligning with Tesla's mission to accelerate the world's transition to sustainable energy. This alignment boosts Tesla's brand and promotes a broader cultural shift towards sustainability.
In the context of celebrity endorsements, Kim Kardashian's showcase of the Tesla Cybertruck is a masterstroke. It merges the worlds of entertainment, technology, and sustainability, highlighting the evolving nature of brand-consumer relationships in the digital age. Tesla's innovative approach to vehicle design and its commitment to sustainability is amplified by Kardashian's endorsement, illustrating the power of celebrity influence in shaping consumer preferences and driving societal trends.
Ultimately, Kardashian driving a Cybertruck and branding herself as a "cool carpool mom" is a significant endorsement for Tesla, enhancing the brand's visibility, appeal, and alignment with sustainable values. In an era where brand success is increasingly tied to social influence and cultural relevance, Tesla's association with Kardashian can only be seen as a positive development, driving the brand further into the mainstream consciousness and reinforcing its position as a leader in the shift towards a more sustainable future.
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