Bengaluru, what is referred to as India’s Silicon Valley, could be the next location for a Tesla Gigafactory and become the foundation for the highly anticipated Tesla India launch, it is reported. Karnataka has proposed Tesla to build an R&D centre and a manufacturing facility in Bengaluru, as per a new report from economictimes.indiatimes.com.
Gaurav Gupta, Principal Secretary, Commerce & Industries, Karnataka government, has revealed the latest development in the Tesla India launch. The state has pitched Bengaluru to Tesla as a potential candidate for the company’s Gigafactory to manufacture Tesla electric cars in India, Gupta told business publication. “We have offered them (Tesla) all support to set up a research and development centre as well as the manufacturing unit,” he said.
The first big development in 2020 about the Tesla India launch came on 21 September. It was reported that the Palo Alto based company was interested in having a Tesla India R&D centre in Bengaluru and that a discussion was on with the Karnataka state government for the same. The next update was Elon Musk, co-founder and CEO, Tesla, Tweeting on 2 October that a Tesla electric car will be launched in India “next year for sure.”
Next year for sure— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) October 2, 2020
Speaking further, Gupta said that the discussions about setting up Tesla India facilities are still at a preliminary stage. While the COVID-19 outbreak and the China-India tensions have proved to be a big blow to India’s expected EV boom in 2021, the possible Tesla’s arrival in India next year could relaunch the nation’s EV aggressive.
The Tesla Model 3, which costs $46,990 (INR 34 lakh) onwards in the USA, is the first likely Tesla model for launch in India. However, a $25,000 Tesla EV (Tesla Model 2) is in the making and it could make a much more attractive proposition for customers in India.
Tesla’s only overseas manufacturing facility currently is in Shanghai, China. The company is establishing a second global unit in Berlin, Germany, that is to start production next year. Hopes are high on India being the third overseas Tesla EV hub. It is possible that the first Tesla India facility could be small-scale final assembly site like in Tilburg, Netherlands rather than a full-scale Gigafactory, though. Even that would be considered a big deal as a knocked-down vehicle assembly plant for Tesla is not commonplace.