This year’s January 7th has witnessed a significant step in Tesla’s efforts to sell cars in markets around the world. It is the day that marks the onset of Shanghai-made Model 3 mass delivery to customers in China.
The company’s CEO Elon Musk personally handed over the first units to local customers during an event held at Gigafactory 3 in Shanghai on Tuesday this week. What makes this milestone gain even a greater significance is that the MIC Model 3s are the first units produced and delivered by the company’s first factory outside of the U.S.
At the ceremony held to mark the first deliveries, Musk thanked the Shanghai city government for the support and help provided to build the factory so rapidly. It took just around 10 months for the plant to be completed and ready for use. He also expressed his gratitude to the Tesla China team as well as to all the local customers.
Tesla’s CEO spiced up his speech with a few dance moves that have gone viral to highlight that Tesla employees don’t forget to have fun despite working hard. Musk handed over car keys to 10 Chinese owners of the Model 3 who enjoyed their first ride on site.
The electric car manufacturer also officially announced the beginning of the Model Y program in China. Musk said that “ Model Y will have more demand than probably all of the other Tesla cars combined. Model Y will also have advanced manufacturing technologies that we will reveal in the future”.
The Tesla CEO showed enthusiasm regarding the opening of a design center in the country. “I think this would be very exciting. I think China has some of the best art in the world. And I think it’s something that would be appreciated on a worldwide basis,” Musk added.
With the Model Y speculated to reach production soon and the current production rate of 3,000 Model 3s a week, the company could produce 500,000 cars a year in Shanghai, a goal mentioned in a post on Weibo on Tuesday.