Elon Musk seems relieved that Tesla’s sprawling factory near Berlin, built on 165 hectares of formerly forested land, is finally beginning production of Model Y electric hatchbacks for Europe. But the timing is tricky as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine drives up costs of materials for Tesla’s batteries, a global computer chip shortage grinds on and tight local water supplies threaten to check Musk’s big ambitions for the plant.
“Excited to hand over the first production cars made by Giga Berlin-Brandenburg tomorrow!” the billionaire entrepreneur tweeted Monday. “Makes a huge difference to capital efficiency to localize production within a continent.”
Tesla’s CEO had planned to begin assembly operations at
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