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Giga Berlin Will Be The 1st To Get Tesla’s Next-Generation Paint Shop

Elon Musk opens up about the next generation paint shop Tesla is building at its newest factory to break ground in Berlin, Germany.

In their latest podcast, the Third Row Tesla crew talked with Tesla CEO Elon Musk and Sandy Munro about some of the innovations Tesla brought to bear in optimizing the design of the Tesla Model 3. The new episode was released to Third Row Tesla’s Patreon supporters this morning and will be released on all your favorite media channels at 4:20pm Pacific time today: Website | Twitter | YouTube | Stitcher | Spotify.

On the podcast, Musk opened up about Tesla’s plans to switch to casting for the bulk of the body of the Tesla Model Y and about how the Tesla Model Y’s heat pump and its Octovalve delivered a 10% improvement in range to the vehicle. He also opened up about the next-generation paint shop Tesla is building at its newest factory in Berlin, Germany.

The paint shop in Tesla’s new Giga Shanghai factory. Image courtesy: Tesla

The engineering-fueled innovation that pumps through Tesla’s veins leads to products that evolve not year to year but week to week, as dozens of new improvements are folded into the product in an agile software development style that means continuous improvement system. Now that Tesla has taken on the challenge of building a better machine that builds the machine, the same holds true with its factories. “With each factory that we’re building, we really want to redesign the factory so it’s not really a copy, but a significant improvement. Shanghai is a major improvement over Fremont,” Musk said.

The new paint shop at Giga Berlin will give Tesla the ability to add multiple layers of paint for a unique look that’s nearly impossible with traditional painting methods. “The Berlin paint shop is going is going to have optioning for another 3 layers of paint,” Musk said. “In order to get dimension in paint, you really need multiple layers.”

Multiple layers of paint add very real depth to the paint that makes colors more vibrant than what’s possible with traditional painting systems. “If you get dimension, there’s something called flop, where you see the change in color with curvature,” he said. “If you can do something like lay down a gloss layer, then lay down a layer with color tint, then lay down another gloss layer, you can get kind of a 3D feeling to the paint. It just pops. It’s so much better than anything else. We’re going to do this in Berlin for the first time.”

These extra layers of paint will clearly cost more than traditional painting methods, but offer disproportionate value to the customer, according to Musk. Building these next-generation systems into the factory up front is much more cost effective and lets Tesla leverage its new construction as a competitive advantage. “From the beginning, the Berlin paint shop will be capable of a lot more layers of paint,” he said. “Over time, we’ll upgrade the factory in Fremont and Shanghai, but it’s quite hard to change the paint shop once it’s designed.”

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Written By

I'm a tech geek passionately in search of actionable ways to reduce the negative impact my life has on the planet, save money and reduce stress. Live intentionally, make conscious decisions, love more, act responsibly, play. The more you know, the less you need. As an activist investor, Kyle owns long term holdings in Tesla, Lightning eMotors, Arcimoto, and SolarEdge.


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