Take a tour inside Tesla’s first Gigafactory | CNBC Reports

Take a tour inside Tesla’s first Gigafactory | CNBC Reports

I’m driving up to the Tesla Gigafactory
right now, located outside of Reno, Nevada. It’s huge, you can already see it
from what feels like a mile away. It’s that signature Tesla red, that’s
outlining the top of the production facility. Let’s go check it out. I’m getting rare access
inside Tesla’s Gigafactory. The name originates from the word ‘Giga,’
the unit of measurement representing ‘billion.’ And, as it suggests, the
building is ginormous. Right now it’s about 5.3 million
square feet of operational space. Its current footprint is the equivalent
to about 33 American football fields. And it’s not finished yet either. Elon Musk, Tesla’s co-founder and CEO,
has referred to the Gigafactory as the “machine that
builds the machine,” and it’s all part of his master plan to
make electric cars more affordable. It’s planning to do that by mass
producing its own batteries. Tesla says it currently produces more
batteries in terms of kilowatts per hour than all other carmakers combined, making up
about 60% of the world’s lithium-ion batteries. As big as the building looks
behind me, it only represents about 30% of the entire facility
when it’s fully built out. It really does feel like we’re in the wild here,
you have wild horses over on my right. Even where I parked my car will eventually
be more of the production facility. There’s 7,000 employees working on site here,
things are really only just getting started. Once completed, Tesla’s Gigafactory here is expected
to be the largest building in the world by footprint. And while Tesla already has factories
in California and New York, this is the first one that it’s
completely built from scratch. There are also plans to add
Gigafactories to Europe and China. At the start of the year, construction began
on a third Gigafactory in Shanghai. There’s actually more spots for expectant
mothers than just visitors. Tesla’s Model 3, an electric sedan, is the
company’s first mass market vehicle. Yet production here at the Gigafactory has
encountered delays and some quality issues, which means output has
fallen below expectations. Being able to smooth things out here,
is seen as imperative for Tesla. Before I enter the production facility, I have to wear
these safety glasses and these safety boots as well. This factory produces Model 3
electric motors and battery packs, along with Tesla’s energy storage
products, Powerwall and Powerpack. Panasonic is Tesla’s exclusive
battery cell supplier for Model 3 and its plant is technically
part of the Gigafactory. This is where I start my tour. This is the area where
Panasonic and Tesla meet. So all day long, these vehicles are delivering
battery cells from Panasonic to Tesla, dropping them off and then going
back to Panasonic to pick up more. The entire process is completely automated,
there’s no human labor in this process. Each Model 3 vehicle requires
more than 4,000 battery cells. And after the battery cells are assembled into modules,
the modules are then assembled into packs. The handoff between Panasonic
and Tesla occurs through these, they’re what’s called
Automated Guided Vehicles. It’s the equivalent of a driverless
forklift, if that makes sense. Yeah, like an autonomous car, right? It’s like an autonomous
car but it’s a forklift. Chris Lister runs operations here. In order to transition the world to sustainable
energy, we really needed to build this big, build this boldly and really build as many battery cells
as we possibly could to really accelerate this transition. The factory operates 24/7, and Chris
tells me he’s seen explosive growth in production output and new product
innovation over the past year and a half. Tesla expanded its workforce
by 30% in 2018. But it’s also announced company-wide
layoffs multiple times as well, as it struggles to rein in costs while
expanding in a relatively new industry. But hiccups at the factory have caused
significant production delays and even sparked some
safety concerns. We’re very committed to safety. You’ll see things like forklifts, and
we saw auto guided vehicles. For those who have never been in a factory
environment before it’s important to understand how to operate safely, and as we scale up it’s really
important to think through with safety in mind. Safety reminders are
posted throughout the area. I even noticed this sign
as I entered the site. So, who are the people working here? The adjectives I would use to describe the
people here: Passionate, scrappy, ambitious, very excited to
change the world. But I don’t see as many
people as I expected. Well, that’s because automation
is everywhere you look. I don’t see a lot of human labor
in this part of the factory. This area is actually
about 90% automated. Not every part of the
factory is that way. But the way we designed the drive unit, as
you can see behind us, very modular stations, that we swapped in and out where we’ve got
redundancies, we have different technologies that we employ here that make the drive
unit final assembly very automatable. Chris tells me the area
we’re in is 90% automated. But they’ve had to back off in other areas
and add more humans back in. It’s easier to grab things like hoses out
of mid air and attach them together as a person looking at those, as opposed
to trying to get a robot to do that. He says automation makes sense
in portions of the production that are highly repetitive
with less variables overall. Not everything has to be automated to make
an optimal end-to-end manufacturing solution. I take a break from my tour,
because, well, it’s lunchtime. Apparently today there’s a big sale on merchandise
for employees, so there is a line out the door of people waiting to buy
things like hats, gloves, shirts. I don’t think I’m eligible for an
employee discount though. So, it’s lunchtime
at the Gigafactory. In addition to the food trucks outside,
there’s also this cafeteria here, where you can get things like soups, salads,
but I’m going to get a burrito bowl. So, lunch cost me $9.68. Where do I go? This is a lot of soda options,
it says the Gigafactory here. There’s a ton of options of Jones Soda,
it’s almost like the Giga Jones soda counter. After lunch, I head to the rooftop to see
how the factory is building its solar panels. Although, it’s only just started. Tesla says that once completed the Gigafactory
will completely run off of renewable energy. Not just solar, but wind too. And once the production
is finally finished, this is expected to be the largest
rooftop solar array in the world. That means 200,000 tiles
on this roof alone. It aims to be a net-zero
factory when finished. That means the total amount of
energy used by the building will be about equal to the amount of
renewable energy created on site. I end the day where all the different pieces
of manufacturing come together. You know those rides at the
carnival you pay to flip you? Probably some of the same
principles designed into those. This is the final area where
the drive unit is assembled. What you see behind us is a high-speed
crane system, where we’re able to get different variance down to
this floor, very very quickly. This elevator system goes up and down three
floors and it’s basically an automated warehouse. Once the battery packs and motors are completed
they’re brought to this area where they’re then loaded onto these semi-trucks behind
me and then transported to Fremont, California, which is about a
4-hour drive from here. And then from there, they’re
assembled into vehicles. Every hour, trailers get
dispatched to California. Chris tells me that they’re taking the things they’ve
learned here to use in the new Shanghai factory. In fact, they’re aiming to make these operations
the model for all future Gigafactories. Elon Musk says there could eventually be
10 to 12 Gigafactories around the world. This Gigafactory is an exciting thing
to be part of and so many people have invested so much of their lives into making
this successful, it’s a very prideful thing. This is a great thing for the city of Reno,
this is a great thing for the state of Nevada, this is a great thing
for the world. As I end my day taking
a spin in the Model 3, I’m reminded of the reason why this
entire operation exists in the first place. Elon Musk’s ambitious plan for Tesla and
its Gigafactories is beginning to take shape, but with plenty of construction and adjustments still
ahead, the road to achieving that vision has just begun. Hey guys, it’s Uptin. Thanks
so much for watching! Let me know what you think about Tesla’s
business model in the comments below and while you’re at it
subscribe to our channel. We’ll see you next time.


  1. It’s magnificent when you get to see all of this being developed so cleanly and beautifully. Is the gigafactory in the US completed now?

  2. CALIFORNIA didn't get this factory because through ALL the red tape that state has, it would have taken FOUR YEARS just to get "approval"…
    Think about it… CALIFORNIA had a GOLDEN ( The "Golden" State ?) opportunity to get this factory built creating more jobs in California AND THEY COMPLETELY BLEW IT !

    THEN, they had to build this factory FOUR HOURS AWAY which costs them in SHIPPING !!!!

    California didn't even give AF !

  3. You don't have to explain safety glasses but you should have explained that the shoes were to PROTECT THEIR EQUIPMENT from static electricity, not to protect you from anything.

  4. https://www.usatoday.com/in-depth/news/investigations/2019/11/12/tesla-gigafactory-brings-nevada-jobs-and-housing-woes-worker-injuries-strained-ems/2452396001/

  5. A car in the future is here with us now…smokeless cars, meaning more pro-environment , pro-people. Congrats TESLA . Sad to say in our country, this kind of car is not supported yet by our National Government. Hybrid cars are more suitable here. because charging stations are not common here yet .

  6. where they will dispose those solar tiles ones their lifetime finish. Ohh… just pack them in ship container and send it to aisa.

  7. And this is why Andrew Yang's UBI is required. 90% automated in some sections. Operating 24 hours a day. Automated fork lifts. I'm also guessing that most of the folks who work here are have technical diplomas and degrees. Folks with just high school or no high school education may serve in the canteen. They don't even need that many janitors. So what do these people do?

  8. $80,000 for a Tesla. Only the well of can afford this car. It cost just like a Porsche. Move aside Porsche, the Tesla is here now.

  9. Just again laying straight to the camera by Tesla employee as Tesla corporate culture have always been shouldn't be OK for the respectable media house.

  10. Botanist here, Why is tesla growing plants that produces cancer causing spores in the office? Lol. GET RID OF THEM IMMEDIATELY.

  11. I am not German. VW is a city – is it big? what do you think? The Group operates 122 production plants in 20 European countries and a further 11 countries in the Americas, Asia and Africa. 664,496 employees worldwide produces 11 millions vehicles per year https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e7_LPZVCNSg

  12. AWESOME. I always wanted to see the place where the flames were installed into the cars. Soon, some of those cars will go up in flames for our entertainment value.

  13. To much of a fire risk, god forgive if ever there was a fire they would never ever put it out, it is a shame, but here in England, UK we are a small country and if a Tesla caught fire in a small village it would be devastating.they really need to find away to stop them self igniting. plus the fact there is no one to repair them there is a compound in London with broken down Tesla cars that have been waiting for months to get repaired one customer has been waiting for ten months, another customer got so fed up and sold his car after 12 months and lost £25 thousand pounds, that is a lot of money to lose in 12 months, also the money you save on fuel goes on the excessive insurance premiums, because when they catch fire you cannot extinguish the fire because lithium becomes more volatile when it comes into contact with water, just look at the cars in America on youtube the fires are horrendous, also the depreciation is unbelievable £95 thousand plus and 3 years later £34 thousand if you are lucky. sorry until there is a proper backup service then forget it, there is so many second hand Tesla's in the UK no one wants to buy them, just to unreliable. it is a great shame, so all in all just get it sorted.

  14. Tesler is gonna bury every ice car made as they redefine the automotive industry and driving, by continuing to be the fastest selling vehicles ever made.

  15. There are a lot of minut variables on public roads too. Should we just scrap FSD if it cant seem to avoid contretemps barriers? Design a robot to grab those damn hoses and keep it pumping already!

  16. It is crazy that Tesla is using mostly robot to make car while other major market leading automaker like Volkswagen, Toyota still depend on human. Robot make less mistake and very accurate than human. Robot wont go on strike and can work for 24 hours. Elon is genius.

  17. Thanks for showing future model gigafactory + please provide the full tour of Nevada factory when ready,China factory of Tesla new base with some electric car detail features + if get a chance to feature Mr Musk in your video.

  18. As long as Eion Musk keeps dreaming to revolusionize our idea of sustainable energy, our world would surely turn into a better one.

  19. 2:37 Am I the only one to see that pathway as a safety risk? You have people walking in both directions, out of path, with no physical barrier to separate them from those autonomous multi-ton vehicles (automated guided vehicles, AGV), in the same space as those AGV's. WTF? Even with radar, lidar, sensors, etc, a simple error (human or otherwise) and a small touch in a person's foot or leg and it is broken immediately.
    Yet they say they are very committed to safety. Yeah, right…

  20. Sadly it will be all robots to get cost down to become a major profitable company to “change the world “
    I like how people think it’s so great but don’t understand the damage that happens when getting materials for batteries and when they recycle them.

  21. What about the fact, the batteries are heavy metals and are no recyclable. You could bury the batteries and did them up 100 years later. Why are we not focusing on hydrogen?

  22. Lithium battery technology on a massive scale is not sustainable in any way, shape or form. Lithium must be mined from deep into the earth's crust and it is usually done by Chinese child labor or in the Australian outback, a continent already shattered by natural disasters.

  23. Great review. The China Factory set so many new records for construction, I sure hope they documented it on video.

  24. I really hope Tesla stay strong because Republican has ended Incentive Federal Tax. Oil Companies really wanted Tesla goes away for good. I do not want Tesla fail do to evil; such as ruining this Earth. Maybe Elon Musk start up new electricity grids in competition against PG&E and other power companies with higher KWh. rate. In Baker, California with 40 Tesla Super Chargers with gigantic well shaded over cars of solar panels plus massive of battery, is totally so clean Mega-Watts energy.

  25. Yo Elon …

    The Ford’s shut down factory in São Bernardo do Campo, Brazil is perfect for this. Make it happen !

  26. There are ghost towns for sale in the USA,old towns now nobody lives there,maybe Tesla can buy those towns and make good use of those towns.

  27. People buy this stock! It will become the most valuable ever. 600.00 now. I see this stock going to 10k, with splits.

  28. You'd think a company like GE would have stole the march on EVs. But that's what you have there, yes men, and female managers toeing the line likely cat fighting with comanagers. Tesla's mission? Put the pensions of legacy manufacturers to the American taxpayer.

  29. https://www.tradevoyant.com/post/the-one-technology-stock-that-is-built-to-thrive-in-2020

    Interesting take on how twitter is poised to grow in the sociopolitical climate of 2020.

  30. This might be used to produce vast numbers of the Mooremobile, a cheap fast roadable car that garners energy from the environment for unlimited range.

  31. The sad thing is, we will be leaving a tonne of lithium battery products for our future generations to deal with. Care to sip?

  32. Good video. As people complain about Tesla, I am up 201% ($2.8 millions in Tesla). No, I am not kidding. 😉 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xECiVg6BAYM

  33. Love the fact that they incorporated their key supplier in the factory. Reducing a lot of costs and problems with transportation and communication.

  34. So what is good in this, machine create machine, people don't work here, this new leftist are become ideology who hate humans, we need exterminate them until becomes to late

  35. Tree of Truth , Pioppi Diet Team , Aseem Malhotra , Derek C Howie , Grant Schofield , Ross Walker , Ivor Cummins , Eric Berg , Ford Brewer , The greatest Health Team Ever , Pleased to partner with TESLA with the besr Doctor on the planet , Yes Aseem Malhotra treating milloins of people around the world with Healthy eating & fasting , Yes Alternative Medicine simply works for all that take part, Yes U can over do it , Time out is a wonderful treatment , So Live Simply So That Others May Simply Live , Yes a retreat in New Zealand , Do come & share the Bay of Plenty , Tauranga New Zealand , Yours in service Derek C Howie Duty above & beyond the call , We shower the Tesla team with Blessings D.C.H. out

  36. where will we leave all those used up millions and millions rosten worthless batteries, emitting leaking and many toxic substances, still poisoning the earth after 1000 years, I hear no one about that, that is a bit strange right? and recycling? Batteries cannot be recycled whatever someone else wants to tell you !! Its like nucleair energy, finally it wil kill you and your FAMILY and kids and so further !!! Never never buy a Tesla if you wil stop this STUPID marketing Madness of MTF Musk !

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