Since the first Tesla Model Y with a heat pump was delivered in the USA in March 2019, interested parties have been hoping that the Model 3 will also get this technology for more efficient air conditioning. And now this upgrade actually seems to be imminent for the smallest Tesla. Because this week it became known on the one hand that the Tesla Model 3 from the Gigafactory in China will adopt a number of innovations from the Model Y. And then a Chinese supplier announced order quantities for heat pumps that could even be sufficient for Model 3 from Tesla’s main plant in Fremont in the USA.
Tesla supplier does not name any names
The information from the air conditioning supplier Aotecar was discovered and translated by Tesla observers on Twitter. Tesla is not directly mentioned in it, but it is described clearly enough as a well-known electric car manufacturer from North America that is active in China. And he obviously has a great need for heat pumps: 450,000 units per year were ordered for a first car (again, no names are mentioned), 200,000 for a second, for a total of 650,000 heat pumps per year.
Deliveries for the first model started this August, according to Aotecar data. Because the Tesla Model Y from Fremont has so far been equipped with a heat pump probably manufactured by Tesla itself, it should initially be about the Model 3 from China. On the weekend, a regular Tesla informant published a list of innovations that are to be implemented soon. The heat pump is also included, as are other points such as an electric tailgate on the Tesla Model 3, about which there were rumors before.
Autecar is Tesla heat pump supplier located in Nanjing 🇨🇳. A recent internal doc reveals a big order of 450k heat pumps (presumably for Model 3) to be delivered since Aug. Another order (placed in May 2019 for Y?) Of 200k will be shipped starting in Jan 2021. pic.twitter.com / I0ufsapJF6
– Ray4️⃣Tesla⚡️🚘☀️🔋 (@ ray4tesla) September 14, 2020
This information fits well together and suggests that the Tesla Model 3 from China will soon be converted. But the capacity of the Gigafactory there for this model is estimated at a maximum of 250,000 per year (in August Tesla produced 12,714 Model 3 there), so that at least 200,000 heat pumps would be left. An export to the USA would be conceivable here – and in Model 3 from Fremont a smaller Frunk tub has already been discovered, behind which there could be space for the new technology.
200,000 heat pumps for Tesla Model Y
From January 2021, according to the information in the document, Aotecar will also supply 200,000 heat pumps per year for a second, unnamed model. These could be intended for the Model Y from China, whose series production should begin in early 2021, according to Tesla. Tesla CEO Elon Musk had praised their own heat pump in the Model Y as a masterpiece of his team, which brings great efficiency benefits. Whether Aotecar would build a version of it under license or deliver devices it had developed itself was initially open. The actual Tesla innovation could also be in a new eight-way valve called Octovalve to control the air conditioning.