Tesla Giga Shanghai’s fleet of mysteriously covered cars is growing

Key Points

  • 🚗 Tesla China seems to be preparing for the release of the Model 3’s “Project Highland” update.
  • 🛣️ Aerial footage shows a growing fleet of covered vehicles at the Gigafactory Shanghai area, indicating a significant update.
  • 📰 Reports suggest that the updated Model 3 might go on sale soon, with domestic buyers opting to wait for the “Project Highland” version.
  • 🧐 Speculations arise that the wrapped vehicles are likely Model 3 Project Highland units due to the ongoing production and excitement.
  • 🚙 The updated Model 3 might feature a revamped interior, new headlight, and fascia designs, and a different camera setup.
  • 📅 Tesla is expected to reveal the new Model 3, possibly with significant updates, in late August or September 2023.

Recent reports have suggested that Tesla China is now setting the stage for the impending release of the Model 3’s “Project Highland” update. Aerial footage taken around the Gigafactory Shanghai area suggests that this may indeed be the case, as hinted at by the growing fleet of mysteriously wrapped vehicles in the facility’s logistics lot. 

Last week, China Securities Journal, citing an individual reportedly familiar with the matter, noted that Tesla’s updated Model 3 is expected to go on sale in a matter of weeks. The electric vehicle maker is reportedly even taking deposits from domestic buyers of the all-electric sedan, and consumers are being given the option of whether to take delivery of a current-generation Model 3 with numerous perks or a Project Highland unit with fewer incentives

The Journal noted in its report that so far, more consumers from China are opting to wait for the rollout of the Model 3 Project Highland update, even if the vehicle does not come with as many perks as the current-generation Model 3 units that are already available now. This is understandable considering the excitement surrounding the Model 3 update. 

Interestingly enough, reports from China have also suggested that initial production of Model 3 Project Highland units is already underway. And while Tesla has not confirmed this, aerial footage from drone operator Jason Yang, who has been closely following the progress of Gigafactory Shanghai since its earliest days, recently revealed a growing fleet of mysteriously wrapped vehicles in the factory’s logistics lot. 

Interestingly enough, other vehicles in the area were not covered at all. This has brought speculations among electric vehicle enthusiasts that some of the wrapped vehicles are probably Model 3 Project Highland units. Considering the prevalence of reports suggesting that initial production of the updated sedan has reportedly begun, such speculations seem quite feasible.

While Tesla has been very secretive about the changes that would be implemented with Project Highland, previous reports have suggested that the vehicle would feature a completely revamped interior. Aerial footage of Project Highland prototypes hinted that the cars would utilize a system similar to the Model S and Model X, which would suggest that shifting gears in the new Model 3 would be done through the infotainment display. 

Leaks surrounding the updated Model 3’s exterior also suggested that the vehicle would feature a completely new headlight and fascia, making it easy to distinguish from the current-generation Model 3. Apparent cameras spotted in the Project Highland prototypes also hint that the updated all-electric sedan would feature a camera setup that’s a bit different from some of the vehicles that Tesla offers today. 

Watch Jason Yang’s recent Giga Shanghai drone flyover in the video below. 

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