The development of electric vehicle technology took a huge step forward with the recent activation of operations at the brand new Tesla Motors factory outside Reno, Nevada in the US. The Gigafactory is a huge milestone in the company’s history and will see them begin to mass produce battery cells for their energy storage products, including batteries for electric cars.
The Gigafactory is currently less than a third complete but it will still have a huge impact on the automotive industry. When finished it will cover 4.9 million square feet and have a staff of 6,500 (creating many automotive jobs to boost the current 2,900 workforce). The plan is for this to be achieved by 2018.
Effectively the operations at the factory will double the world’s capacity for producing lithium-ion batteries. This is a huge development and showcases how much the company is committed to promoting the technology and bringing it forward. It also sets up operations in the US whereas previously the production of the components was dominated by companies in China, Japan and South Korea.
Tesla chose to set up their own factory in the US for several reasons. Primarily it was because the current producers are unable to keep up with their demand, making it difficult for them to hit their production targets. Additionally parts are relatively expensive and have an impact on how much the finished vehicles can sell for. The Gigafactory allows them to boost production and drive down prices, providing two huge benefits.
The new Tesla factory could set a trend and see more companies setting up their own operations to develop and manufacture components for electric vehicles. This would have a positive impact on each country where new facilities are set up, potentially creating even more automotive jobs in the process.
At John Gibson Associates we will be observing how the market reacts to Tesla’s operations. We hope it will have a big impact on technological development in the UK and lead more businesses to expanding their operations. This in turn could create automotive jobs and enrich the economy. We will be on hand to offer our recruitment service to fill any roles that are created.