Elon Musk opens up on car quality, bad paint jobs

From an outsider’s perspective, it appears it was per week of misfires, mishaps and missteps for the person who’s main the cost on mass-produced electrical automobiles and the subsequent era of house rockets.

And for Elon Musk, Tuesday 2 February was at some point that was actually not firing on all cylinders.

Perhaps proving that bad issues do certainly are available in threes, final Tuesday — the identical day that his SpaceX Starship prototype rocket check resulted in a fireball — noticed the billionaire tech mogul announce he was taking a break from his “beloved” Twitter.

And in a candid media interview on the identical day, the Tesla CEO additionally admitted that claims of bad high quality Tesla automobiles produced in 2018 have been “accurate”.

Elon Musk candid about Tesla automobiles

Musk was interviewed by engineering marketing consultant Sandy Munro, of Munro & Associates who “rip vehicles apart” to evaluate high quality. In 2018, Munro mentioned the Tesla Model 3 had “flaws that we would see on a Kia in the 90s”.

“I thought your criticism was accurate,” Musk advised Munro within the interview that aired on the YouTube channel and podcast Munro Live.

‘Production is hell’

Musk went on to elucidate why issues, comparable to bad paint jobs and the Model 3 design, are frequent and famous “production is hell”.

According to the billionaire businessman, it took Tesla some time to “iron out the production process”.

He added that one of the best time for purchasers to buy a Tesla is “either buy it right at the beginning, or when the production reaches a steady state”. 

“But during that production ramp, it’s super hard to be in vertical climb mode and get everything right on the little details,” the CEO defined within the Munro Live interview.

In November 2020, the agency recalled 9,500 automobiles as a result of roof trim which will have separated and bolts which will haven’t been correctly tightened.

And on Tuesday 2 February, Tesla introduced that will probably be recalling 135 000 Model S and Model Y automobiles on the request of the the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) that discovered such fashions might expertise touchscreen failures that disrupt different capabilities.

‘Watching the paint dry’

One of the frequent points affecting Tesla automobiles nevertheless is the paint work.

In the interview with Munro, Musk mentioned that one explicit challenge was paint not being given sufficient time to dry when the road was working rapidly, that means automobiles in-built these intervals have been extra vulnerable to have points.

“Production is hell. Of any American start-up car company, I think Tesla is the first to achieve volume production in 100 years, basically,” Musk mentioned. 

“So prototypes are, relatively speaking, easy and fun, but reaching volume production with reliable parts and at an affordable price is excruciatingly difficult.”

Tesla Model 3: The ‘Frankenstein situation’

And then there may be what Musk dubbed because the “Frankenstein situation” in terms of the Model 3 all-electric sedan.

Musk defined that Tesla has the “best material science team in the world”, however the issue is that all of them suggest completely different supplies.

‘When you try to join all these dissimilar alloys…you’ve acquired gaps that you simply’ve acquired to seal, and also you’ve acquired to hitch these items, and a few of them have to be joined with rivets, a few of them have to be joined with spot welds, a few of them have to be joined with resin or resin and spot welds,” he continued.

Munro asks why newer Model 3s nonetheless make use of such a multi-piece rear physique design as a substitute of a single casting like on the Model Y.

To which Musk answered:

“It’s hard to change the wheels on the bus when it’s going 80mph down the highway,’ Musk responded, saying the Model 3 represents such a large portion of the automaker’s volume that the company [needs] an opportunity to redo the factory without blowing up the cashflow.”

Munro weighs in on 2021 Tesla Model 3

At least Munro was barely extra impressed with the 2021 Tesla Model 3 in a “teardown” video he posted final month on Munro Live.

His impressions in a nutshell? The paint store supervisor was fired, however not the man accountable for panel gaps…

ALSO READ: Changing lanes: The supercar shock we expect made Elon Musk go electrical [watch]

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