by Morton E. . Dec 08, 2023
Image Credit: Wu Wa/YouTube
A recent video from the Shanghai South Port terminal has shed light on a possible explanation for the seemingly tempered domestic sales of Tesla's upgraded Model 3, also known as the Model 3 Highland. The video, captured by longtime Tesla watcher Wu Wa, reveals a large export fleet of Model 3 Highland and Model Y units gathered at the terminal.
Wu Wa, who has closely followed Giga Shanghai's development since its inception, noted that most of the vehicles spotted in the flyover were Right-Hand Drive (RHD), an indication that they are meant for RHD countries like Australia, New Zealand, and Japan. Notably, these countries receive their Model 3 Highland units from Giga Shanghai, Tesla's sole production facility for the upgraded sedan.
This observation suggests that Giga Shanghai is currently prioritizing global demand for the Model 3 Highland, likely explaining the trend in the vehicle's domestic sales figures. This export focus is expected to continue until production of the upgraded Model 3 begins at Tesla's Fremont Factory in California. Expectations are high that the Model 3 Highland would start its production in the Fremont Factory sometime in 2024.
NEWS: New video shows a lot of new Tesla Model 3s preparing for export from Shanghai South Port, via @bentv_sh.— Sawyer Merritt (@SawyerMerritt) December 7, 2023
New Model 3 Giga Shanghai production ramp continues to go very well. pic.twitter.com/jLKiJ7rMzr
Gigafactory Shanghai will likely remain very busy, especially amidst speculation that a new Model 3 Performance is due in the first half of 2024. The upgraded Model 3 Performance is expected to feature a number of key improvements over the Model 3 Highland RWD and Model 3 Highland AWD, such as special performance seats and a potential special badge at the rear.
Gigafactory Shanghai is Tesla's largest factory by volume. In the electric vehicle maker's Q3 2023 Update Letter, the facility was listed with an estimated annual output of over 950,000 vehicles. And with potential expansions underway, Giga Shanghai would likely play an even bigger part in Tesla's operations.
Watch the footage below.
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