Tesla has made a number of new announcements related to its latest innovations and future plans as part of its 2023 Investor Day event.
Held at its Gigafactory Texas facility in Austin, the EV-focused OEM provided new insights into the activities it is conducting across several areas that mutually work to help it achieve Master Plan 3 – its broader vision to enable and support a more sustainable world. As it looks to fulfil this plan, the OEM will launch a new manufacturing plant, a new charging service, and begin developing a new, more sustainable, electric motor for its future vehicles.
A highlight of the event came during a Q&A session, where Tesla officially announced a new facility – Gigafactory Mexico. Having been previously confirmed by the country’s president, the plant will be located in Nuevo León – a state near the city of Monterrey – and develop Tesla’s next vehicle platform which, in turn, will support a variety of new models.
While a timeline on its development and deployment, or when production is expected to commence, has yet to be confirmed – Tesla advised that its negotiation process with the Mexican government has benefitted this rollout. Here, an accelerated regulatory process and a quick roadmap to construction and production will allow Tesla to develop the new Gigafactory more quickly. The Nuevo León location was chosen based on its proximity to its Texas Gigafactory, which also functions as its corporate headquarters. At launch, the OEM expects Gigafactory Mexico to be worth more than $5 billion (€4.7 billion).
Another key reveal centered around a new permanent magnet electric motor composed of zero rare earth elements. While announced at Investor Day 2023, Tesla highlighted that it had been working towards a zero rare earth motor for many years prior. Between 2017 and 2022, the automaker was able to reduce its usage of rare earth materials in drive units for its Model 3 sedan by 25%. The OEM has not yet detailed which elements the new motor will benefit from or when the motor is expected to be introduced to its production EVs.
While primarily targeted at investors, the event also hosted an important announcement for Tesla customers – a new unlimited overnight charging plan. The plan is the OEM’s first activity under its Tesla Electric business, which supplies clean energy to consumer homes through Powerwall – its home energy storage product. For $30 (€28) per month, Tesla owners will be able to charge their vehicles for an unlimited period of time, so long as that period is not during the day. Tesla expects the plan to launch in July in its home state of Texas, offering it to a broad range of customers – including those who do not own a Tesla Electric Powerwall.
In addition to these reveals, further announcements supporting Master Plan 3 on a smaller scale were made. While confirming that the Cybertruck is on track to enter production before the end of 2023, Tesla also detailed the benefits of newly implemented vehicle production methods. These methods can, for example, enable a 40% reduction in the footprint of its factories, reduce production costs by 50% for its next-generation EVs, and further reduce the risk of delays at each stage of the production line.
The OEM will look similarly to increase the efficiency and speed of its production practices by minimizing the amount of work needed at each of these stages. It will, for example, mount seats directly to the under-floor battery pack – with the unit then raised into a body shell painted in sections – greatly reducing the need for doors to be removed and re-installed. New details were also offered about its forthcoming vehicle platform, which will use 75% less silicon carbonite when compared to the current generation and accept batteries of any chemistry.