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Published on April 24th, 2014 | by Christopher DeMorro

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California In The Running For Tesla Gigafactory After All?

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California was thought to be out of contention Elon Musk’s proposed battery Gigafactory, but a new report suggests the Golden State is still in the running. What could California offer Tesla that would shift him away from the surely-lucrative offers from other states?

Reports suggested that Tesla had narrowed down the Gigafactory location to one of four states; Nevada, Arizona, Texas, and New Mexico. California was snubbed because of a lack of subsidies, though proximity to local natural resources is also said to play a role in placing the Gigafactory. With the right location, the Tesla Model S could have more American content than the Ford F-150.

Let it not be said that Tesla is immune to politics, however, as Senator Diane Feinstein allready spoke with Musk back in March. What she offered isn’t specified, though with at least four other states courting the electric automaker, I’m sure it’s a generous package. Tesla’s VP of communication and marketing said that California “could be a viable option” under the right conditions. Meanwhile, Tesla has also leased another California facility measuring 430,000 square-feet for an as-yet-undisclosed purpose. The former parts distribution center in the San Joaquin Valley is a leftover from the days of DaimlerChrysler, and is less than one-tenth the size of the proposed Gigafactory.

Could this all have been a ploy to get California to pony up? After all, the closer the Gigafactory is to actual car production, the better, assuming it actually gets built. With Golden State now also in the running, will the rest of the southwest up the ante? More importantly, should they?

Source: The Sacramento Bee



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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.



  • ttrr

    It will be in California, in Imperial County, near the Salton Sea, where a new factory using a technological breakthrough will allow the clean extraction of lithium from geothermal energy emanating from the San Andreas fault beneath the lake. An abundant local source of lithium, plus a region that is already a major center of geothermal, solar and wind energy, ample cheap land and access to rail, meets all of Tesla’s criteria. Plus, access to a skilled workforce from the most technologically advanced state. In addition, this will help fund restoration of the lake to reverse increasing salinity and might return the region to its previous touristic glory days.

    • egogg

      There’s an awful lot of certainty in this statement. Unless you’re Tesla upper management, I don’t think the choice is that certain.

      There are political backscratching maneuvers that can still sway the company to pick another state. A state could, for instance, give Tesla massive tax breaks that lasted for years, free land, breaks from other regulations, etc.

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