1.1 million Teslas in 2021? Factory in China alone is expected to produce 523,000 electric cars

By the end of January, the world will find out what Tesla is up to for 2021. Usually when the company presents its business figures for the previous year, it publishes a forecast or a target for the new year, and Tesla CFO Zachary Kirkhorn has already confirmed that it is planned this time again. On average, analysts are currently expecting just under 800,000 Tesla deliveries in 2021, which would mean an increase of 60 percent. But at least in terms of production capacity, the numbers could be much higher.

Study sees 523,000 Teslas from China

This comes from Tesla’s own information on the capacity at its main electric car plant in Fremont and an analyst assessment from China. In its report for the third quarter of 2020, the company named Fremont’s current capacity of 90,000 Model S and Model X plus 500,000 Model 3 and Model Y, for a total of 590,000. Tesla specified 250,000 Model 3s for the new Gigafactory in China. In the meantime, the Model Y is also being produced and sold there – and according to a new study, Tesla should produce 523,000 of the two models in China in 2021.

If that turns out to be true, which does not seem unrealistic in view of the successful ramp-up in China for the Model 3 and the increasing experience with the start of production, and if all these electric cars are also sold, Tesla could thus achieve a good 1.1 million deliveries this year. That would be more than twice as many as in the previous year, in which the target of at least 500,000 was just reached (and exceeded in production). From 2019 to 2020, Tesla deliveries had only increased by around 36 percent, but were also affected by many months of coronavirus problems.

The information on expected production in China comes from a study by the Chinese brokerage house Industrial Securities, the key figures of which were published on Wednesday by Twitter user @ ray4tesla. The analysts write of a current total capacity of 8,000 electric cars per week in the local Gigafactory, of which 3,000 are Model Y. By the end of the year it should be increased to 15,000 per week, i.e. 780,000 vehicles extrapolated over a year.

More than 100% growth at Tesla in 2021?

What Tesla has to say about this will, as already mentioned, be seen over the course of the month. However, CEO Elon Musk already gave a hint for 2021 at the end of October 2020: In the telephone conference on the figures for the fourth quarter, he was asked by an analyst whether 850,000 to 1 million deliveries in the new year would be realistic. Chief Financial Officer Kirkhorn wanted to put him off, but Musk was less disciplined: “You’re not far off,” he replied.

This can be interpreted to mean that Tesla is planning either (slightly) fewer than 850,000 deliveries in 2021 or more than 1 million. But in addition to the capacities mentioned in Fremont and China, the new Gigafactorys in Grünheide and Texas, which are currently being built, should be added in the new year. In this respect, the lower value, even if it is closer to the current analyst consensus, does not sound very likely. So 2021 could be a year in which Tesla will be twice as big as before with its electric cars alone.


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