Tesla CEO Elon Musk takes over Model 3 production after falling short

Tesla is trying to get Model 3 production back on track. CEO Elon Musk says ex Apple exec Doug Field is now focused on vehicle engineering.
Written by Jake Smith, Contributor
CNET/CBS Interactive

Tesla CEO Elon Musk is taking over Model 3 production. According to The Information, Musk took direct control of the Tesla division responsible for producing its mass-market Model 3 last week.

Image: ZDNet

Musk told Tesla employees in an earlier email Monday obtained by Jalopnik that Tesla will fall short of its manufacturing goals when it reports totals to investors later this week.

Musk has pushed aside from manufacturing Tesla's SVP of engineering, Doug Field, who joined the automaker from Apple. Tesla failed to hit its manufacturing goal of 500 Model 3s per day, or 2,500 a month. The Information reports:

Until the move by Mr. Musk, Mr. Field had been consolidating power since joining Tesla from Apple in 2013. Mr. Musk had given Mr. Field several chances to raise output, but the company has repeatedly missed its Model 3 production targets over the past year, including after Mr. Field took over manufacturing

Responding to the author of the report on Twitter, Musk said Field is focused on vehicle engineering at Tesla and regarded him as a leader in the space. The Tesla leader also said he is back to sleeping at Tesla's factory in Fremont to oversee production of the Model 3. Musk tweeted:

About a year ago, I asked Doug to manage both engineering & production. He agreed that Tesla needed eng & prod better aligned, so we don't design cars that are crazy hard to build. Right now, tho, better to divide & conquer, so I'm back to sleeping at factory. Car biz is hell ...

Monday marked two years since Tesla revealed the Model 3, and shortly after began taking order reservations.

Tesla has said it wants to double production to 5,000 Model 3 cars per week.

Shares of Tesla have slipped 17 percent in five days among a credit downgrade, Model 3 numbers, and recent Autopilot-related fatal Model X crash.

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