08 Jan Elon Musk gives interview to Chinese media, answers important questions
Jan 08, 2019 | by Iqtidar Ali
After the successful groundbreaking of the Gigafactory 3 in Shanghai yesterday, Elon Musk gave a short interview to the Chinese media and answered some extremely important questions (full-text transcript and video below).
Tesla CEO Elon Musk seems very happy about Tesla’s presence in China as he did a little dance too at the ceremony that has become viral on the social media by now.
Elon Musk‘s dance on the ceremonial stage is not without reason, Tesla has entered the largest EV market on earth that is potentially the only region going to become ‘fully electric’ in the next decade or so.
In the following interview, Elon Musk further clarified the Tesla Model 3 and Model Y production goals and how Silicon-Valley based electric car automaker wants to break the trim level production of their cars between China and the United States.
Let’s first watch the popular Elon Musk Gigafactory 3 dance.
Transcript – Elon Musk Interview to Chinese Media after Gigafactory 3 groundbreaking ceremony
Journalist: So what makes this Gigafactory so special?
Elon Musk: Gigafactory Shanghai will be the first Tesla Gigafactory outside of the United States and will be our most advanced Gigafactory as well so we want to make this beautiful, we want to make this factory extremely environmentally sustainable and this to be a showpiece for the world.
Journalist: So now there are these Chinese customers had to wait for Tesla cars and the price is a little bit higher than the United States, so when the factory is finished, can we expect more manufacturing or production of the cars?
Elon Musk: This factory will only reach production next year and also we’ll be making the most affordable versions of the Model 3 and Model Y in this factory, but the expensive versions the performance and long-range Model 3s will still be made in the U.S. they should not expect that next year there will be a sudden price drop in the high-end versions of the Model 3, we’ve actually reduced the price of the cars in order to make up for the tariff, so we actually make less profit for cars in China that we do in other parts of the world.
Journalist: It’s the 40th anniversary of China’s opening-up policies, it includes bringing down the car tariff and allowing the full ownership in this industry, so what’s your take on the opening-up policies of China?
Elon Musk: Well we’ve seen the opening-up policies have been a steady movement towards opening, and we feel very optimistic about the long-term future, we think the direction has been great, so I think we are not bothered by a short-term drop, and probably there will be some challenges in consumer demand in 2019 and probably early 2020 but probably by the middle of next year I think we will be back up to a very strong growth.
It’s very important that the world transition to sustainable transport and sustainable energy generation, so solar, battery storage and electric vehicles and China has been a world leader in that transition, so we look forward to helping accelerate that transition along with other electric car companies in China.
Journalist: The fierce competition in China, so how can Tesla stand up?
Elon Musk: We think that the market is very big for electric vehicles, our goal is to try to get all cars to electric, even in China electric cars are still a small percentage of the total number of cars sold, so we think the opportunity is very significant for all companies.
Journalist: In 10 years the majority of new cars made will be electric?
Elon Musk: I think ‘Autonomy’ will be even faster than that!
- Complete coverage of the Gigafactory 3 groundbreaking ceremony, from Shanghai China
- Tesla opens Model 3 configurator for the public in China and Europe
- Tesla to build new Gigafactory in China with the capacity of producing 500,000 EVs per year
- Tesla Model 3 officially debuts at ‘Auto China 2018’ in Beijing