Tesla plans to spend $3.6 billion more on manufacturing in Nevada

An aerial view of the Tesla Gigafactory near Sparks, Nevada

Bob Strong | Reuters

Tesla plans to spend $3.6 billion more on expanded production of batteries and heavy-duty trucks in Nevada, the company said on Tuesday on social media.

According to its public statements, Tesla intends to employ 3,000 more people across two new facilities over time.

It was not immediately clear whether Tesla’s plans expand the company’s manufacturing footprint beyond the property it is already developing outside of Reno in Sparks, Nevada.

Tesla said in a statement that its new facilities will include a 100 GWh battery cell factory, where the company expects to have the capacity to produce battery cells for 2 million light commercial vehicles annually, and a high-volume factory where it will eventually manufacture its Class 8 powerful, fully electric truck, Tesla Semi.

Tesla began construction of its first battery factory in Nevada in 2014. It operates this factory today with a key cell supplier, co-tenant and co-investor in the factory, Panasonic. The sprawling factory is known as GF1, Giga Nevada or the original Tesla Gigafactory. It primarily manufactures and supplies Tesla’s Fremont, California, vehicle assembly plant with high-voltage battery packs.

Republican Nevada Gov. Joe Lombardo revealed details of Tesla’s plans for expansion in the state early Monday. Tesla confirmed the plans on Tuesday ahead of its fourth-quarter earnings update, which is scheduled for Wednesday after markets close.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk held a ceremony in Nevada in December to kick off deliveries of the company’s Tesla Semi to an early key customer, PepsiCo. Tesla first announced its plans to produce the Semi in 2017 and had a targeted production start in 2019 that was delayed to 2022. The company does not yet manufacture a large volume of Semi trucks, but does make some at the Nevada Gigafactory.

Fans and critics of Tesla have posted pictures of Tesla Semi trucks with Pepsi Frito Lay branding which they have seen on the road since that announcement, including some broken on the shoulder.

Tesla has yet to publicly disclose how much each truck costs, and did not say how many it has produced or sold in its fourth-quarter delivery report.

The company is expected to share additional details about its semi program in its Q4 earnings call.

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