Let me state Elon Musk has never directly said he agrees with the Daily Car Blog on any specific point. Unlike Jeff Bezos, he isn’t aware of our existence. This is great because we avoid any potential litigation. When Tesla announced they were planning to ramp up production to 500,000 cars per year, we here at the Daily Car Blog said while that goal is realistic it will come at a cost to production quality. And we cited a simple comparison with Porsche, which has taken over 50 years to reach annual production of 200,000 cars per year. And big volume manufactures don’t get it right, look at the endless recalls issued by all manufacturers.
Take another example, BMW is marketed as a premium luxury brand but most models are often plagued by unreliability and annual recalls. We can not use Jaguar as an example because they are complete nut cases on a one-to-one basis. As a result of being propped up by nostalgic media coverage, in reality, Jaguar is on a miserable year-on-year downward spiral. And for that, we here at the Daily Car Blog are truly grateful.
Yet again we digress from the main point. Why does Elon Musk agree with the Daily Car Blog, a hitherto minuscule pin-sized dot on a giant OLED TV screen? During a long interview with Sandy Munro, Musk admitted that Tesla quality suffers when going for increased production targets. Tesla has known problems with fit and finish, bad paint finishes, panel gaps the size of gorges.
These production quality issues are a result of Tesla speeding through the production process. And that speed of processing is partly down to consumer demand and not much supply of new products. Tesla are perfectly capable of addressing production issues by simply spending more time on assembly during production.
However, they probably have yet to perfect the Just In Time manufacturing methodology adopted by Toyota in the 1960s and 1970s. Toyota has decades of experience with Just In Time, Tesla is a relative newcomer aiming for big production volumes. In time Tesla will get the correct balance but for now, misaligned panel gaps will remain an issue.