Auto industry tesla-info-2

Published on March 20th, 2013 | by Christopher DeMorro

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Infographic Reveals Tesla Model S Part Origins

tesla-info-2While Elon Musk hopes to that Tesla Motors is the vanguard of the future car manufacturing, the company still relies on a small number of parts suppliers to put the car together. This neat infographic shows who makes what on the Tesla Model S, and you might recognize some of these names.

Tesla has done their homework, and many suppliers, like Brembo and Magna, are considered top-tier suppliers. Yet many of these companies are located outside of the U.S., with Brembo headquartered in Italy and Magna calling Canada home. Still, Tesla makes an overwhelming majority of the Model S components in-house, including proprietary parts like the battery pack, motor, and on-board charger.

Click to Enlarge

Click to Enlarge

This has allowed Tesla to license and manufacture parts for other companies, including Daimlerand Toyota for projects like the RAV4 EV. Even so, Tesla certainly finds it more cost-effective to contract out certain specialty parts, like the headliner (Magna), antenna (Harada) and battery chiller (Modine) to other companies. But the most important stuff Tesla keeps in-house…and other automakers might decide to bring more of their own production in-house, if Tesla is successful.

From modern manufacturing methods to 21st century showrooms, Tesla is rocking the boat of the auto industry. But will it pay off?

Source: Automotive News




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About the Author

A writer and gearhead who loves all things automotive, from hybrids to HEMIs, can be found wrenching or writing- or esle, he's running, because he's one of those crazy people who gets enjoyment from running insane distances.



  • Sam Rai

    really it shows another advantage of the electric vehicle. While an EV may have complex, cutting edge tech it is overall much simpler than a modern ICE. No shifting transmission, no exhaust system, no fuel system etc. Tesla took further advantage by replacing almost all human interface with a single massive touchscreen. While i imagine i would prefer dials in certain cases, Tesla went the touchscreen route in part to reduce the need to develop, design, manufacture (or outsource) all the dials, switches etc. Now they can just pop the same touchscreen into any of there cars and constantly upgrade and update without the need for physical redesigns. It’s a smart work-around for an upstart…and, while the “touchscreen for everything” design is possible in an ICE, it makes more sense and is better taken advantage of in an EV.

    In general i think the genius of Tesla is they took the potential of EV’s seriously. As a result their car is packed with utilizations of the ADVANTAGES of Ev’s over ICE cars…..while other EV’s seem to be trying to hide the weaknesses with almost apologetic design. As a result the Leaf, Volt, Fisker, Coda, are in many ways inferior to their gas counterparts. The Model S made full use of the unique positives of EV tech and became the best car in it’s class….despite it’s limited long distance range.

    • sandy222

      It’s their! Line 9. Limited long distance range?

    • johnrysf

      “Limited long distance range”? Let’s make the reasonable and fitting assumption that you know up front that you absolutely need, or have a bias toward, long distance travel. Therefore, you’ll make the “gotta’ do it” decision to forego the 60 KW, 160-mile range battery, and go for the 85 KW, 265-300-mile battery.

      Next, consider Tesla SuperCharger/battery swap stations that will cover 90% of North America by the end of this year, 98% by the end of next year. You’ll there get recharged in, respectively, 25 minutes/90 seconds for, respectively, free/$60. After I’ve been driving for 3-1/2 to 4 hours, I need to use the restroom, eat, stretch, walk around. The wife is strongly inclined to shop and/or socialize. Kids demand this stuff, and more.

      If your method is to fill up and jump right back in the car, you can do the battery swap in half the time, or less, that you take to gas up now. But let’s say you like the idea of “free”. Using the SuperCharger will require that you adopt my family’s tactics, or go crazy. I’d imagine that most people could, and would, adjust, rather than go crazy.

      In addition, consider that last month SuperCharger time was cut in half (to become 25 minutes). Further improvement, especially with new battery chemistry or successful giant capacitor development, isn’t improbable.

      So, what’s the problem?

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Bruce-Miller/100000952005408 Bruce Miller

    Chreos astounding claims made good by nano carbon super Capacitor
    manufacturers in U.S.A.! Watch now for astounding advances in Solar,
    Wind,Wave, Hydro, Tidal, Geothermal and Thorium energy technologies
    as these super capacitors with power density approaching or even
    exceeding gasoline and voltages higher than batteries, and without
    internal resistance losses inherent in batteries, take over the
    electric vehicle scene – even powering planes since they are
    inflammable and safer than fossil fuel schemes, vibration free,
    single moving part motors for reliability not possible with piston or
    jet engines. Expect mass production technologies in China to drop
    prices, and an energy revolution – away from gasoline to occur, and
    very quickly, as all governments seek ever lower air pollution
    methods. Has Big Oil met its match? I think so – for outside the
    U.S. Anyway.
    Great site! love the parts sourcing for the Tesla – all they need to change out now is the drive train and batteries to remain contemporary. Science moving at computer speeds now, Asian inteligentsia challenging the Western World – a good contest, where humanity always wins!

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  • stainlesssteel

    Interesting, but I wonder who makes these major components:

    touchscreen (powered by Nvidia but who makes LCD? PCboard? etc)
    steering column stalks and switches (Daimler i believe)
    tires
    wheels
    headlights, taillights
    sound system
    backup camera
    panoramic roof motor

    the cool remote door handle motors

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