Saturday, December 6, 2014

Touring Tesla

Clean. That's how I would describe the Tesla factory. Thus far there is only one place that Teslas are manufactured and it's in Fremont, California, about 25 miles from our home.

Part of the draw of touring this factory is that it's not open to the public, as was the Ferrari Factory in Marinello, Italy, which I dragged my family to the museo portion of.

Prior to taking the tour you sign away your life on a three-page NDA. This is the first sign that Tesla is a tech company, not a car manufacturer. If you actually read the NDA then you know that you are subject to being hung and then shot if you so much as pull your cell phone or camera out during the 45-minute tour. Tesla paid $42M for 5.2M square feet in this former NUMMI factory, which is a steal given the price of Bay Area real estate.

Most of what I saw I cannot write about due to that NDA. However, I can share with you that I felt this eerie sense of deja vu while there. Only when I was back in my Prius, which I liked a whole lot more before experiencing the Tesla 0-60 in 3.2 seconds, did I realize that it felt like I'd been in Tony Stark's Iron Man workshop, ala Marvel Comics.

Unlike most of the men and women who work in auto manufacturing, Tesla employees are not part of UAW. This has been covered extensively in the press. Hopefully Tesla continues to pay its people a living Bay Area wage so that the workforce can remain unrepresented.

All in all, it was an interesting tour, one I'd recommend if you have the opportunity.

1 comment:

Audrey Wagner said...

Are you sure it's ok to blog about it? Glad you did -- very cool!