Given their nowhere near state of the art manufacturing, Tesla’s gear up to produce significant volumes seems problematic.
Tesla’s autos have been a triumph thus far, but I’m having difficulty seeing how they’re going to mass produce the Model 3. They’ll get some out the door, for sure, but probably not on time, and they’re very unlikely to get significant quantities in 2017 (maybe 2018 as well). Meanwhile Chevy’s competitive, the Bolt, will be here in a few months. And we know Chevy can produce in volume.
Tesla’s factory is messy, it hiccups, modules are repaired on the line, stockpiles of parts lie around in “semi-organized” fashion. It goes against all the tenets of the lean manufacturing operation pioneered by Toyota, celebrated in The Machine That Changed The World, and universally adopted for its advantages in reliability, cost, and higher job satisfaction. This is not a manufacturing line that can, by the force of Musk’s will and charisma, produce 10X more cars two years from now.
I hope I’m wrong about all of this. Having driven a Model S, I would tell you it’s my favorite car ever.