Tesla’s Giga Berlin plant kicks off production for Indian market


  • Tesla has started production of right-hand drive electric cars in its Giga Berlin plant focusing on the Indian market.
Tesla Model 3
Tesla has started production of right-hand drive electric cars in its Giga Berlin plant focusing on the Indian market. (REUTERS)

Tesla has kicked off production for India-bound electric cars at its Giga Berlin facility, claims an HT report. The electric car manufacturer has started producing right-hand drive cars for the Indian market in its Berlin factory and hopes to have them on the roads of this country by the end of 2024, the report has stated quoting a person familiar with the OEM’s plans. Produced in a small number, these electric cars would be used as test prototypes in the Indian environment. However, the person didn’t reveal which models of the auto company are being produced as the Indian market-spec right-hand driver versions. Expect the EVs like Model 3 and Model Y to reach Indian shores.

Interestingly, this news comes immediately on the heels of the report that Tesla is sending a team to India in the third week of April to scout for locations to set up its manufacturing facility in the country. The OEM is reportedly planning to set up its India plant with an investment of about $3 billion.

The report stated that Tesla is working on its India plan in two dimensions, export and manufacturing dimensions. This comes after the Indian government announced its new EV policy in March this year, in which the customs duties for importing electric cars were reduced to boost electric mobility in India as well as local manufacturing. Also, this policy mandated that the OEMs could enjoy lower customs duty only if they set up manufacturing facilities in India with a certain level of investment. The Indian government linked the policy to a simultaneous manufacturing investment commitment above a certain threshold, within a specified period, and with a strong localisation of the supply chain as well.

In November 2023, it was reported that Tesla was working on its proposed most affordable car, which is likely to be a two-door sedan or SUV, which is specially focused on the Indian market. This affordable EV is meant to debut in Germany and India will be the second market for the car. This electric car is meant to be manufactured in Giga Berlin only. However, with the Indian market in focus, it will be later produced in Tesla’s intended India manufacturing plant as well.

Tesla is reportedly considering Gujarat, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu for its intended India manufacturing plant site, primarily because these are coastal states with major ports, which will allow Tesla to export the cars produced locally in the country to overseas markets. The report further stated that Tesla will possibly make the largest foreign direct investment in India, including a direct and immediate investment of $3 billion to produce its most affordable new small car. Besides that, there would be a $10 billion commitment from its other partners to support this manufacturing ecosystem in the country, and a cumulative $15 billion in the battery industry ecosystem as well.

First Published Date: 04 Apr 2024, 06:42 AM IST

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