Tesla Gigafactory opens in Brandenburg, 861 days after plans announced
Despite a series of run-ins with water supply networks, environmentalists and Germany’s notoriously lengthy red tape, the first Tesla factory in Europe will officially open on Tuesday, March 22, with special guests in attendance to see the Gigafactory’s first cars ceremoniously handed over to customers.
Elon Musk to personally hand first Tesla cars to customers
Tesla boss Elon Musk, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, Federal Minister of Economics Robert Habeck and state premier of Brandenburg Dietmar Woidke are all expected to be in attendance at the opening ceremony of the new Gigafactory in Grünheide, not far from Berlin.
Musk announced his intention to personally hand over the first Model Y vehicles to their new owners, writing on Twitter on Monday night: “Excited to hand over the first production cars made by Giga Berlin-Brandenburg tomorrow!”
Gigafactory in Brandenburg went up quickly - by German standards
Production on the site was originally supposed to start last summer, but progress got tangled up in Germany’s infamous red tape, along with concerns about water supply and complaints from environmentalists. Further complications arose when Tesla changed plans to add the battery production site.
For speed, the American car manufacturer raced ahead with construction, in some cases even before the necessary permits had been granted - a risky gamble, but one that paid off when the final permit was issued by regional authorities.
Just 861 days have passed since Musk first announced plans to build a Gigafactory in Germany, making this a lightning-paced project, by German standards (and perhaps too fast, if you ask those concerned about the plant’s environmental impact) - but it still falls far short of the 15 months it took to build Tesla’s similarly-sized Gigafactory in Shanghai.
Once production gets up to full capacity, Tesla wants to produce up to 500.000 electric cars per year in the new factory, and is also building a battery production facility on the same site. The plant will eventually create up to 12.000 new jobs, making it the third-largest car factory in Germany.
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