Tesla is preparing its assault on Europe

On the boat.
On the boat.
Image: REUTERS/Stephen Lam
We may earn a commission from links on this page.

Just as Europe’s finest carmakers are gearing up to challenge Tesla in electric cars, Tesla is about to bring its mass-market Model 3 right to their doorsteps. As it only has one factory in Fremont, California at the moment, there’s only one way for Elon Musk to send his cars over.

As cited by Electrek, a new report by Focus WTV (link in Belgian Dutch) notes that Tesla is planning to ship 3,000 Model 3s a week starting in February through the port of Zeebrugge in Belgium. The report says that Tesla will invest €2.5 million in the port, where final checks will be applied to the cars before they are distributed across Europe.

Tesla spent much of this year in “production hell,” as Musk called the experience (paywall). After missing its goal twice, Tesla was able to reach its longheld aim of producing 5,000 Model 3s a week in late June (paywall). That, in turn, allowed it to reach its first quarterly profit for two years in the fiscal third quarter, giving Tesla some breathing room as skeptics lined up to bet against the company and huge loans come due.

The company said in August that it is aiming for a weekly production rate of 10,000 by early 2019. That would allow it to produce enough cars to be able to sell the Model 3 outside of the US for the first time. Earlier this month, Tesla started taking European orders but has not said when reservation holders can expect to get their cars yet or which countries will get delivery first.

N.B. Please note I own a very small amount of Tesla stock.