Tesla employees say they took shortcuts to meet aggressive Model 3 production goals

USATODAY - Tech Top Stories 

Tesla has reigned over the electric car market for over a decade, but these new autos are hoping to give Tesla a run for their money. Current and former Tesla employees working in the company's open-air "tent" factory say they were pressured to take shortcuts to hit aggressive Model 3 production goals, including making fast fixes to plastic housings with electrical tape, working through harsh conditions and skipping previously required vehicle tests. For instance, four people who worked on the assembly line say they were told by supervisors to use electrical tape to patch cracks on plastic brackets and housings, and provided photographs showing where tape was applied. They and four additional people familiar with conditions there describe working through high heat, cold temperatures at night and smoky air during last year's wildfires in Northern California. Tesla can't appeal to women: Electric cars, Elon Musk may be off-putting Why I bought a Tesla: One woman's experience buying Elon Musk's sleek EV Their disclosures highlight the difficult balance Tesla must strike as it ramps up production while trying to stem costs. Tesla recently told shareholders that in the three months ending June 30, 2019, it made 87,048 vehicles, including 72,531 Model 3s, the company's lowest-priced sedan.