The Tesla Model 3 made in Shanghai has already had its first batch of 7,000 units shipped to the European market. This was never in Elon Musk’s original plans, however, given the difficulty in meeting demand only with Fremont, the opportunity arose.
The Model 3 Standard Range Plus RWD lot will replace the American offer in European markets, where Tesla’s electric sedan is one of the most desired products among electric cars.
This version is not just made in China, it has an important difference from the American model. The battery cells are from CATL instead of those used so far in the USA, made by Samsung.
However, CATL supplies lithium iron phosphate cells, which are cheaper and have a longer life than ordinary lithium, manufactured by the Korean company. Having a range of 430 km in the WLTP cycle, they guarantee better performance for the Chinese Model 3. Here in Brazil, for example, BYD commercial vehicles only use this battery.
In addition, although it is not official, it is suspected that the Chinese Tesla Model 3 has a superior quality in assembly and finishing compared to the American, due to the technical problems faced at Fremont, due to the innovative process of the brand.
In Shanghai, Tesla uses a more modern production process, which cannot be introduced in Fremont without the plant being shut down for a long time, still requiring an extra mega investment. The level of complaints from Chinese Model 3 customers is much lower than that of the American, which suggests that quality has gone up.
In addition, it also corroborates the thesis that Musk demanded a better product for the Chinese due to the huge local competition, which does not exist in the USA and all this having to add a competitive price.
Germany, France, Italy, Holland, Portugal, Switzerland and Sweden will receive the Model 3, which has the same changes seen in the American model 2021, including USB-C, wireless smartphone charging, heat pump and double glazing.
From China, Tesla can reach other markets with a lower cost product than the American one, especially by sending it to closer countries or even on the American continent, such as Latin America.