Tesla CEO Elon Musk confirms 2021 opening for Travis County gigafactory

A screen shot of Elon Musk speaking into a microphone
Elon Musk confirmed a 2021 opening for Tesla's Texas gigafactory Oct. 21. (Courtesy Tesla)

Elon Musk confirmed a 2021 opening for Tesla's Texas gigafactory Oct. 21. (Courtesy Tesla)

Tesla CEO Elon Musk said his company's Travis County gigafactory is on track to begin operations sometime in 2021 during the electric carmaker's third-quarter earnings call Oct. 21. This timeline confirms Tesla's initial projection the project could go online by the fourth quarter of 2021 when the factory was first announced in July.

Musk said on the earnings call that "Giga Texas," located east of Austin, is on a similar timeline as the also under-construction "Giga Berlin."

"For Berlin and Austin, we do expect to start delivering cars from those from those factories next year," he said. "Because of the exponential nature of the scaling up of a manufacturing plant, it will start off very slow at first, and the output will become very large."

Within 12-24 months of the factory beginning initial operations, it will operate at full capacity, he estimated.

"That is a very fast period of time, especially for new technology," Musk said.

Construction at Giga Texas began over the summer. Site plans for the project outline a 7.9 million-square-foot manufacturing facility occupying 280 acres on the 2,100-acre property owned by Tesla at the intersection of SH 130 and Harold Green Road in southeast Travis County.

Musk also teased developments with the Cybertruck, which will be produced at Giga Texas.

"We always want to make the car we deliver be better than the car we unveil, and that's the goal with the Cybertruck. There's a lot of small improvements compared to what was unveiled. I think it's going to be better than what we showed," he said. "If all goes well, we'll be able to do some Cybertruck deliveries toward the end of next year, but it's difficult to predict. I would say there's probably a lot of deliveries in [20]22 and some deliveries toward the end of next year if things go well."
By Olivia Aldridge

Reporter, Central Austin

Olivia joined Community Impact Newspaper as a reporter in March 2019. She covers public health, business, development and Travis County government. A graduate of Presbyterian College in South Carolina, Olivia worked as a reporter and producer for South Carolina Public Radio before moving to Texas. Her work has appeared on NPR and in the New York Times.


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