The aggressive build-out of Tesla’s Chinese Gigafactory, “Giga Shanghai”, has become famous all around the world. The speed with which the area went from a former watermelon plantation to an operational car factory is largely unparalleled. Now, Chinese reports reveal that Tesla has begun construction of Giga Shanghai Phase 2.
Something big is happening at Giga Shanghai
Specifically, this scoop comes from recent footage from the drone operator Jason Yang available on YouTube. The following footage clearly shows groundwork for something major at the Giga Shanghai facility.
Moreover, there is a lot of activity visible at the site, with numerous trucks, cranes and other construction vehicles present. The following picture shows this area visible in front of the Model 3 production building (to the right) and the Battery and Powertrain workshop (to the left).
There’s also a sizeable amount of concrete pipes beside the site, indicating that pipe-laying work will soon commence. Additionally, there’s an empty concrete pad in front of the prinicipal site, with an unknown purpose.
Giga Shanghai Phase 2 construction seemingly begins
Yang suggests that this new major construction work is the “third phase” of Tesla’s Chinese Gigafactory. However, this is likely technically Tesla’s “Phase 2” of the construction, seeing as the Battery and Powertrain building is known as “Phase 1.5”.
This comes as the Battery and Powertrain building is practically an extension of Giga Shanghai Phase 1. Phase 1 was, of course, the construction of the massive building housing the made-in-China Model 3 assembly line.
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In January of this year, Musk said that Tesla was officially launching the made-in-China Model Y program. Moreover, Tesla plans to dramatically expand its factory to accomplish this, essentially doubling vehicle production capacity at the site. The following piece of concept art was originally shared by the Twitter user “Jay in Shanghai” in November of 2019.
Although it is clear that these plans are no longer entirely accurate, as the Battery and Powertrain building seemingly isn’t in the concept art, this provides valuable insight into the final layout of Giga Shanghai. Perhaps most notably, it suggests that the Model 3 and Model Y product lines will share the existing body-panel stamping press.
The Model 3 production building is highlighted with red in the concept art. Moreover, the building opposite to this is the one now beginning construction. It is also possible that the existing Battery and Powertrain building will eventually extend to become the building seen next to the body-panel stamping press workshop.
Phase 2 could double global Model Y production
As such, it seems likely that Giga Shanghai Phase 2 will construct the factory’s manufacturing section for the Model Y. This comes as Tesla Model Y production is well underway at Tesla’s Fremont factory, and Tesla’s Giga Berlin could soon see its official groundbreaking.
Bringing Model Y production to China through Giga Shanghai Phase 2 will ostensibly double Tesla’s Model Y production capacity. The Chinese Gigafactory saw some setbacks after the outbreak of the COVID-19 coronavirus. Now, however, the facility is back to producing Model 3s.
Tesla has not made any public comments regarding Giga Shanghai Phase 2 construction. Nevertheless, it is possible that Tesla will not comment on details of the matter after already “launching” the China Model Y program.