Tesla: ‘Hubris’ to blame for Model X delivery delays

Tesla: ‘Hubris’ to blame for Model X delivery delays

Tesla Motors has warned of Model X production delays, blamed on internal ‘hubris’ and supply issues.

Reports circulating late last year suggested Tesla had quickly ramped up Model X assembly to 800 units per week, representing 75 percent of the 2016 production target. Official numbers from the first quarter point to a twelve-week delivery total of just 2,400 units, or 200 units per week.

Tesla suggests “severe Model X supplier parts shortages” slowed production in January and February. The setbacks lasted “much longer than initially expected,” though the build rate was back up to 750 units per week by last full week of March.

“The root causes of the parts shortages were: Tesla’s hubris in adding far too much new technology to the Model X in version 1, insufficient supplier capability validation, and Tesla not having broad enough internal capability to manufacture the parts in-house,” the company wrote in a statement to investors.

The problems were associated with only a half dozen parts, out of 8,000 unique components, though a single missing part “means a car cannot be delivered.”

The company claims to be addressing all three root causes to prevent similar problems from screwing up the Model 3 launch. Production hiccups have been mostly tolerated with the company’s high-end products, but the company faces increased scrutiny as it prepares to sell a mass-market car. Notably, the Model 3 has already received more than 276,000 pre-orders.

Tesla chief executive Elon Musk recently claimed the Fremont facility, once owned by General Motors and Toyota, is capable of building 500,000 units annually. The company is at least a few years away from approaching the maximum theoretical production rate, which represents nearly 10,000 units weekly.

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