Tesla’s Berlin Factory Clears Public Objection Period, December Launch Still Expected

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According to DW, the final round of discussions on public objections against Tesla’s Berlin Gigafactory has officially come to a close (via @SawyerMerritt). The site is still on track for a December opening, pending final operating permits from local authorities that can be expected anytime now.

The Gigafactory, located in Grünheide, Brandenburg, completed construction last month after navigating lots of bureaucratic red tape and several hiccups that delayed the start of operations from Tesla’s original projections of July to Q4 2021. Once construction was done, Tesla organized a public walkthrough of the facility at a County Fair for the locals.

Brandenburg’s State Office for the Environment announced yet another online public discussion on objections and complaints from locals to the Tesla facility. With the online forum having now run its course, Giga Berlin will be green-lit for operations as soon as Tesla gets the regulatory permits it needs.

Gigafactory Berlin will not only build Tesla’s portfolio of electric cars, but it will also produce next-generation 4680 battery cells to power them. Manufacturing electric vehicles (EVs) locally will allow Tesla to drive down costs, putting the U.S.-based carmaker on equal footing with Germany’s resident automotive manufacturers, including Volkswagen, BMW, and Daimler (which owns the Mercedes brand).

In September, Volkswagen CEO Herbert Diess talked about how Gigafactory Berlin is a wake-up call for the EU’s veteran carmakers, and how it will change the automotive manufacturing landscape in Germany. “Gruenheide will increase competition in Germany – also with Wolfsburg,” he said.

Once the plant reaches volume production, it will be pumping out 500,000 units per year — more than all of the local EV makers combined.

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