In just under an year of Elon Musk’s ground breaking ceremony of Tesla’s China gigafactory, the first batch of Made-in-China Tesla Mode 3 cars were delivered to their owners, as expected. This has set a milestone for Tesla at a time when the company is trying to show that it is capable of meeting ambitious production targets and perhaps even exceeding them. Within China — a country which is known for accelerated production and manufacturing — this Model 3 delivery has been achieved in record time compared to other global companies.
Tesla has been building its electric cars at Shanghai factory for past several months after the company began work on the $2 billion plant. The company has also said that would ramp up deliveries from next month.
The event started on Monday where 15 Tesla employees received cars they had purchased. The China-made Model 3 sedans are priced at 355,800 yuan ($50,000) before subsidies. Imported Model 3 vehicles start at 439,000 yuan for the longer-range version, while the standard range plus model costs under $40,000 in the United States.
The Shanghai plant, up and running in just 357 days, is part of Tesla’s plans to bolster its presence in the world’s biggest car market and minimize the impact of the U.S.-China trade war. The company had earlier said that it wanted to start deliveries from the Shanghai plant before the Lunar New Year beginning on January 25th.
Tesla’s production capacity in Shanghai probably isn’t very high-volume although the company has said previously that it was targeting a production rate of around 1,000 cars per week by year’s end, with potential to ramp up to around 3,000 cars per week.
Thanks to the tax breaks and incentives, demand for the Tesla Model 3 in China grew significantly in 2019. While Tesla’s Shanghai factory is its first manufacturing facility outside of the country, there’s also a gigafactory in the works in Germany just outside of Berlin, and Tesla has also teased plans for at least a fifth gigafactory.