Tesla is making major changes to the overall look of its Model 3 lines at the Fremont Factory in preparation for the revamped design of the all-electric sedan, codenamed: Project Highland.
Tesla has filed for several revisions of the Model 3 lines at Fremont, according to documents found by Teslarati. In all, Tesla’s GA3, or General Assembly Model 3, portion of the Fremont Factory will experience reorganizing for at least the next several months, the permits show.
This morning, Tesla filed and signed an application to build temporary tents that will house Model 3 body fitting and light repair operations until May 1, 2023. The company said the cost is only $20,000 for the project in the application.
Credit: City of Fremont
Tesla has utilized these temporary tents, also known as Sprung Structures, for several years. In Fremont, Tesla established the tents as housing for Model Y lines in GA 4.5, which the company filed to make permanent in February 2021.
It is far from the only change Tesla plans to make in GA3 at Fremont. In another filing, Tesla said it would demolish brake and roll equipment on the Model 3 lines, while providing a temporary floor cover over the pits that store the equipment. All supporting electric and mechanical utilities are set to be demolished as well, the filing states. Tesla lists the cost at $75,000.
Credit: City of Fremont
Roll and Brake vehicle systems are used to simulate real-world road conditions, providing precise results for vehicle performance in a production environment. Tesla utilizes machinery from Burke E. Porter.
Reports that Tesla is planning to revamp the Model 3’s interior design and complexity started to circulate last week following a report from Reuters. The removal of manufacturing equipment to make way for different or updated machinery aligns with the filings, especially as Tesla has made major improvements to production efficiency over the past few years. The Tesla Model Y is an ideal example as the company started using a different, single-piece casting technique for this vehicle to increase vehicle rigidity while decreasing manufacturing complexity.
A potentially preliminary Model 3 redesign was spotted in Santa Cruz, California, this weekend, sporting plenty of covers to hide potential improvements Tesla has in mind.
Tesla Model 3 redesign prototypes are already being spotted
Elon Musk has said in the past the Model 3 would eventually switch to a single-piece casting, which would come after both Texas and Berlin were ramped and the Model Y took over as the company’s best-selling vehicle. “We do have an issue. It is hard to change the wheels on the bus when it is going 80 MPH down the highway,” Musk said in 2021. So, Model 3 is…well, was most of our volume. Model Y will exceed Model 3, but we just need an opportunity to redo the factory without blowing the cash flow of the company.”
The Model Y has already overtaken the Model 3 as Tesla’s best-selling car. Berlin and Texas have already reached respectable production goals. Is this an indication Tesla is preparing to make major manufacturing changes to the Model 3?