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Tesla Launches Faster Third Generation Supercharger

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Tesla announced that it has developed a new, faster Supercharger for its electric vehicles. Currently, the company's almost-13,000 Superchargers top out at 120kW.
It's called the V3 Supercharger, and it can support up to 250kW per car, from a cabinet that's rated at 1MW. Tesla says that "[a]t this rate, a Model 3 Long Range operating at peak efficiency can recover up to 75 miles of charge in 5 minutes and charge at rates of up to 1,000 miles per hour.
 

https://www.teslarati.com/tesla-supercharger-v3-first-look-video/

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Speed of battery charging is definitely a downside of electric vehicles. We haven't gotten to the point where recharging your car is like pulling into a filling station spending 5 minutes pumping gas and driving off. So this is definitely going to help in that regard because for electric cars truly to be successful they also need to be convenient.

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I wonder how pre-warming the battery affects longevity and health. I would assume that they're going to do a lot of testing about dumping that much energy into the batteries that quickly. Batteries get hot when they charge and the faster they charge the hotter they get. I'm no expert on the subject but I would imagine that there would be an upper limit to how fast you could charge a battery safely.

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No splitting between adjacent chargers is as big a deal as 250 KW charging rate. Its essentially 4 times the current speed.

While VW’s Electrify America is setting 350 KW chargers, most of VW group’s cars are not capable of using that peak rage, excpet Porsche Taycan which is capable of utilizing 350 KW chargers as of now. 

 

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Tesla Reportedly Sending Employees Home Mid-Shift, Cutting Assembly Inventory

Literally hours after we reported that Tesla was firing even more people at its Fremont, California factory – layoffs that appeared to have not been included as part of a disclosed plan – the company implemented even more significant cost-cutting efforts that have already affected employee work schedules and impacted the supply of parts used to make vehicles. As CNBC reports, Tesla is sending employees home and cutting basic inventory at its Fremont factory.

The report stated that there were several new cost reduction measures launched by Tesla, but these haven't made public.

First, the company is apparently asking employees to work remotely and keep their travel costs to a minimum. 

Second, the company is telling hourly employees at its Sparks, Nevada Gigafactory, where Tesla makes batteries and drivetrains, to leave in the middle of their shifts. The company is also telling employees to take paid or unpaid time off, according to the report. 

... But what is most troubling - for investors in the $50 billion market cap company - is that this recent slate of layoffs is the third such round of layoffs over the last 12 months. This follows a 9% workforce reduction in June and a 7% cut in January. One wonders if these are all just hallmarks of a "growth story" that deserves a ridiculously premium valuation.

 

Most puzzling of all is that this news all follows a June 2018 e-mail, where Elon Musk claimed to employees that he would never have to initiate another round of layoffs.

"I also want to emphasize that we are making this hard decision now so that we never have to do this again," Musk said in June; in retrospect, "never" has a slightly different meaning in "longville."

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On 3/7/2019 at 6:59 PM, Brian W said:

Speed of battery charging is definitely a downside of electric vehicles. We haven't gotten to the point where recharging your car is like pulling into a filling station spending 5 minutes pumping gas and driving off. So this is definitely going to help in that regard because for electric cars truly to be successful they also need to be convenient. 

The current 30-45 minutes is too long, but I'd be perfectly happy with 10-15 minutes.  Long trips are the only time I'd use a supercharger, and I tend to stop for 10-15 minutes anyway just to walk around. 

What do you estimate the public will tolerate? 

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On 3/7/2019 at 7:56 PM, Tom Kirkman said:

Tesla Reportedly Sending Employees Home Mid-Shift, Cutting Assembly Inventory

Literally hours after we reported that Tesla was firing even more people at its Fremont, California factory – layoffs that appeared to have not been included as part of a disclosed plan – the company implemented even more significant cost-cutting efforts that have already affected employee work schedules and impacted the supply of parts used to make vehicles. As CNBC reports, Tesla is sending employees home and cutting basic inventory at its Fremont factory.

 The report stated that there were several new cost reduction measures launched by Tesla, but these haven't made public. 

First, the company is apparently asking employees to work remotely and keep their travel costs to a minimum. 

Second, the company is telling hourly employees at its Sparks, Nevada Gigafactory, where Tesla makes batteries and drivetrains, to leave in the middle of their shifts. The company is also telling employees to take paid or unpaid time off, according to the report.  

... But what is most troubling - for investors in the $50 billion market cap company - is that this recent slate of layoffs is the third such round of layoffs over the last 12 months. This follows a 9% workforce reduction in June and a 7% cut in January. One wonders if these are all just hallmarks of a "growth story" that deserves a ridiculously premium valuation.

   

Most puzzling of all is that this news all follows a June 2018 e-mail, where Elon Musk claimed to employees that he would never have to initiate another round of layoffs.

"I also want to emphasize that we are making this hard decision now so that we never have to do this again," Musk said in June; in retrospect, "never" has a slightly different meaning in "longville." 

Sounds troubling when you put it that way. On the other hand:

1)  "Cutting inventory" is a standard goal of lean manufacturing because inventory is waste.  The goal is to make product to order in batch sizes of one with zero WIP sitting between stations.  Cutting inventory is always a good sign.  If you must have a canary metric, use something else. 

2)  Manufacturing automation has always been a goal at Tesla.  Initially, they attempted to automate too much too fast, which led to scaling back technology and hiring more employees.  However, Tesla never gave up the goal of automating, and automation technology advances rapidly.  It's possible Tesla used automation to reduce man hours, which in turn is causing layoffs. 

3)  Companies regularly use "layoffs" to cull unproductive employees.  In Ye Olden Days, they'd just fire you outright.  Thanks to labor protection laws and the untrustworthy, litigious society America has developed, directly firing people is risky.  To circumvent these laws, companies find business reasons to reduce labor.  This prevents discrimination lawsuits.  For Tesla, this is a critically important activity: they're growing an organization, which forces them to hire people of unknown quality.  Hiring some riffraff is unavoidable; they need a way to jettison that riffraff.  Cue automation and layoffs.  Yes, Musk said they'd never do this again, but only an idiot would believe that promise would supersede business necessity. 

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