Tesla announces its next auto factory will be near Berlin

Tesla CEO Elon Musk said during an awards ceremony in the German capital Tuesday evening that "we've chose to put the Tesla Gigafactory Europe in the Berlin area".

"Will build batteries, powertrains & vehicles, starting with Model Y", Musk also tweeted, a few seconds after the initial, multi-coloured fanfare.

"Everyone knows German engineering is outstanding for sure". The site could become one of the global industry's more profitable auto plants, and a locally built Model 3 could drive earnings and cash flow enough to bring Tesla close to Morgan Stanley's US$440-a-share bull-case valuation.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Sunday (3 November) that Germany should install 1 million electric auto charging points by 2030, ahead of crunch talks with the Bundesrepublik's vehicle industry later on Monday.

Bringing a Tesla plant to Europe has been on Musk's mind for a few years now; until now, it seemed that the United Kingdom had been one of the CEO's locations of choice.

Officials in Germany hope the plant could create as many as 7,000 jobs in production with many more in research and design.

It will also be within reach of Berlin's much-derided new airport, which has yet to open after years of delays.

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In its Q3 earnings report, the firm announced that its European branch would be up and running in 2021 and that it would build its popular Model 3 saloon vehicle there, as well as the forthcoming Model Y crossover SUV offering.

Mr Musk also cited risks surrounding the UK's exit from the European Union for his decision, according to AutoExpress.

Tesla is estimated to have some 30 per cent of the European market for battery-powered cars.

Over the coming years, the biggest electric vehicle production plants will be in Germany, France, Spain and Italy, industry analysis showed. "We lobbied for this for a long time in intensive talks and with good arguments".

Tesla unveiled its first vehicles assembled at the Shanghai facility earlier this month, made as part of trial operations.

Musk also paid $20million to the US government over alleged securities fraud after claiming he had secured funding to take the company private.

  • Darren Santiago