Tesla Giga Shanghai’s return to pre-lockdown production levels delayed: report

It seems like it would take one more week before Tesla’s Gigafactory Shanghai could return to its pre-lockdown vehicle production levels. 

Following a three-week shutdown that saw Gigafactory Shanghai pause its vehicle production, the facility reopened last month with one shift of workers under a “closed-loop” system. A single shift in Giga Shanghai is estimated to result in a daily output of about 1,200 cars per day.

Recent reports, however, noted that the electric vehicle maker was looking to increase the facility’s output to 2,600 units per day, close to its pace before China implemented its stringent Covid lockdowns. This would reportedly be accomplished through the addition of another shift of workers, which would return to work starting May 16. 

As per an internal memo reportedly viewed by Reuters, these plans have now been moved to at least May 23. Citing a person reportedly familiar with the matter, the publication noted that Tesla is currently seeing some challenges with the sleeping accommodations for Giga Shanghai’s incoming second shift of workers. 

With China still adopting stringent Covid lockdown policies, companies are only allowed to reopen if they can adopt a closed-loop system, which requires workers to eat and sleep within the factory’s premises. This allows workers to be isolated, preventing the further spread of the Covid-19 virus. 

But this is not all. There are uncertainties with regards to Giga Shanghai’s suppliers as well, some of which are still yet to return to their normal operations. Tesla China, for its part, has not issued a comment about Giga Shanghai’s targets. 

Despite its challenges in China, Tesla remains optimistic about Giga Shanghai. During the first quarter earnings call alone, CEO Elon Musk noted that Giga Shanghai is ramping as quickly as it can following its long shutdown this second quarter. 

“Giga Shanghai is coming back with a vengeance. So, I think notwithstanding new issues that arise, I think we will see record output per week from Giga Shanghai this quarter, albeit we are missing a couple of weeks,” Musk said.

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