Several days after Tesla CEO Elon Musk threatened to move out of California after a highly publicized spat with Alameda County over Musk's push to reopen Tesla's Fremont Plant and force workers to return despite questions about safety. Many longtime Tesla fans turned against the company as many accused Musk of placing Tesla's share price - not to mention his own personal gain - above the safety of his workers.
After President Trump spoke out in Musk's defense, Alameda County folded and Musk mostly got his way.
But apparently, the bad taste that the incident left in Musk's mouth has prompted him to leak a story about Tesla picking Austin, Texas as the site of its next Gigafactory. Tesla has three "gigafactories" - one in Nevada, one under construction in Berlin, and one in Shanghai.
The news was reported by Elektrek, a blog and frequent recipient of Tesla-related leaks, which it often reports uncritically, leading many to suspect that the blog's "extremely reliable source" is none other than Musk himself.
As Elektrek notes, while Musk has been leaning toward Texas for months, the timing of the announcement is "surprising" and the timelines is "surprisingly aggressive" (just like all of Musk's "timelines").
Giga Texas is expected to produce the new Tesla Cybertruck.
According to a reliable source familiar with the matter, Tesla CEO Elon Musk is set on bringing the next Tesla Gigafactory, or now Terafactory, to Austin, Texas, or at least close to the city.
The people familiar with the project said that Musk has tasked the engineering team working at Gigafactory Nevada to start the process for the new factory, which is expected to make the Tesla Cybertruck electric pickup truck and the Model Y.
Tesla’s CEO also reportedly wants to move extremely fast.
We are told that the decision for the site is not set in stone since Tesla was apparently given a few options in the greater Austin area, but Musk is said to want to start construction extremely soon and aims to have Model Y vehicles coming out of the plant by the end of the year.
It would be an even more aggressive timeline than Gigafactory Shanghai.
Tesla already has a small office in Austin, adding to the convenience of opening the factory in or near the city.
When Tesla started building a team of chip engineers for its Autopilot hardware 3.0, it hired several engineers from AMD’s corporate offices in Austin and Tesla decided to open an office there for its Autopilot hardware engineers.
Recently, Musk has been talking about moving Tesla’s California operations to Nevada and/or Texas due to the automaker’s difficulties working with the local government to reopen the Fremont factory, where it currently produces most of its vehicles.
This project is not directly related to that announcement.
We are talking here about Tesla’s previously announced plans to build a ‘Cybertruck Gigafactory’ in “central US”.
Musk infamously accused California of "fascism" in a now-infamous Q1 earnings call where Musk bashed the Golden State for its restrictive stay at home order. The big question now: If Tesla puts down more roots in Texas, will Musk soon follow by moving his personal residence to the Lone Star State as well?