I was lucky enough to have a spare morning in San Francisco this week.
Since I am eagerly awaiting my Tesla S P85+ delivery in July, I arranged a little trip to the Fremont Tesla factory.
They offer a one hour tour of the facility, that gives you first hand experience of the scale of production at Tesla.
You are not allowed to take any photographs, video or in touch anything in the facility (I think more for the WIlly Wonka effect than trade secrets), but just in case the PR machine at Tesla is watching I have NOT taken any pictures inside the facility.
I do however have a few external shots from the car park.
The first thing that strikes you from the freeway is the sheer scale of the operation. Although they only plan to produce 35,000 cars this year for worldwide demand, the site is vast. I have spend the last 24 hours looking out for Model S in the wild in Silicon Valley but have seen virtually none, once on the Tesla site there are tons! Including a bright orange model from the bods down the paintshop at Tesla.
It is pristine beyond clean. The inside of the factory gleams and the staff exude the same “I have made it” feeling that I experienced at Google in 2002. The tour was quite short and staged, giving you a view of the facilities of Tesla but not any real feeling of the culture or production techniques. Something that I would have liked, but I do understand there is a large audience and the schedule is quite tight.
I haven’t been to any other car production facility, but certainly in a traditional silicon valley way, Tesla stands out for the uniformity of staff style and the general enthusiasm for all involved in all things Tesla.
The gleaming Aluminium pieces really do glisten as the automated assembly process presses the items together to form an amazing engineering masterpiece.
Having seem the car in the ‘buff’ I really would love to strip the paint away and sport the natural aluminium undercoat that looks so ‘American airlines’ but it would stick out and blend in too much for most people!!
If you are in the vicinity and have ordered a car, it’s really worth spending an hour of your time experiencing one of the most incredible tours you can imagine.Tweet