isPart of the secret of automobile manufacturer Tesla's success is its close collaboration with the Japanese battery manufacturer Panasonic. The Japanese operate together with Tesla in the "Gigafactory" the largest production line for lithium batteries in the world. Panasonic announced in March that, after having invested $ 4.5 billion in the Gigafactory, it had reached the targeted production capacity of the cells with a total storage volume of 35 gigawatt hours per year.
But now there is a serious conflict between the partners, which could reveal a fundamental weakness of Tesla. Last week, the most important Japanese commercial document, "Nikkei", announced that Panasonic had suspended another billion-dollar investment in the Tesla Gigafactory plant. The reason is the lack of a request from Tesla, cited by the well-connected network to the anonymous managers of the Japanese company Panasonic.
Apparently, "Nikkei" continues, the production of Tesla's model 3 would be lagging behind the expected cell requirement. Commenting on the report, Panasonic stated that it had not yet completely buried the investment plans, but would for the time being observe the "demand" in the electric car market. Tesla contradicted its main supplier in a separate statement, commenting that they intend to invest more in the factory together.
Musk's dangerous opponents on the stock market
For Tesla's CEO Elon Musk, this decision by his Japanese partners is a crossover at the worst possible moment: already the previous quarter was far below the expectations of analysts, Tesla sold much less Model 3 than expected. Furthermore, the demand for S and X models remained lower than expected. Among other things, Tesla justified this problem by having production problems at home and start-up problems in new markets outside the United States.
Now, if Panasonic contradicts this rationale and indicates the lack of demand as a reason for the cessation of the investment, the Japanese demand Elon Musk has the full promise of growth towards its investors of a production capacity of 500,000 models 3 all 39; year. The managing director reacted accordingly Saturday night on Twitter.
The history of the lack of demand for the Model 3 was "wrong", in fact, the Panasonic production line in the Gigafactory from July 2018, the limiting factor in the production of the Model 3.
Panasonic instead produces the promises 35 gigawatts now only cells with a total of 24 gigawatt hours per year. It was therefore physically impossible to produce more Model 3 in the first quarter. "Tesla is now looking for other battery suppliers," says Musk. Publicly, the dispute between the former dream partners could not be conducted – and the stock market responded promptly: Panasonic's shares increased significantly by just under three percent, Tesla lost value to the same extent.
Musk also reacts so furiously, because Panasonic's decision against further investments in the Nevada desert is not the first indication that Tesla is currently selling far less Model 3 than Musk had once promised. Musk's currently most dangerous opponents are members of a group of investors who sold Tesla's "short" shares, so they bet on a slump in prices for the car maker.
Tesla lowers prices for all models
For a few months they felt that something in Musk's group could go wrong, eagerly gathering evidence via Twitter that Tesla sells far less machines than it produces. They look for and find huge drones or airplanes in California and Nevada filled with brand new unsold Model 3s, secretly photograph the parking lots of abandoned shopping malls full of unsold Model 3 with production stickers of the year 2018, take photos per photo.
Meanwhile, 52 parking places are listed worldwide in the United States on their newly created website, where, according to hobby tracking, Tesla's new powder starts.
Compared to the registration statistics, they are trying to prove that Tesla, contrary to its information, is already building a significantly larger number of cars in the quarterly report than requested. The demand, therefore, is much later than expected, especially where countries are reducing subsidies to electric vehicles.
It goes without saying that only a few weeks ago Tesla lowered the prices of all the models – an illogical decision if the demand actually exceeded the offer.
Musk wants to show the functioning autopilot
Panasonics' decision to stop investments is water in small warehouses, because now for the first time an important member seems to confirm their arguments. Musk, meanwhile, tries to further increase the demand: Tesla announced this week to offer vehicles for the first time in a leasing model.
According to Musk, leasing returns will become part of a fleet of autonomous cars and will earn money in the so-called "Tesla network" with travel sharing services.
But for this Tesla should first imagine a functioning autopilot, which actually makes vehicles autonomous. Also on this moss published an answer on Saturday via Twitter: April 22 wants to show investors that they no longer have to drive their car alone.
His critics on Twitter have responded just as quickly: so far, model 3 lacks the necessary hardware for complete autonomy sensor, in particular a laser for distance measurements is not on board. If Musk wanted to rearrange it – he didn't mention it.
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