Buzzfeed reported on Tuesday that Tesla Inc. (NASDAQ: TSLA) is temporarily shutting down production for the Model 3 at its factory in Fremont, California. The pause will last four to five days, said Tesla employees.
"Our Model 3 production plan includes periods of planned downtime in both Fremont and Gigafactory 1," Tesla wrote in a statement. "These periods are used to improve automation and systematically address bottlenecks in order to increase production rates. This is not unusual and is in fact common in production ramps like this."
The Model 3 is critical to Tesla’s future as a mass-market auto maker. Reportedly, more than 400,000 people have pre-ordered one, paying $1,000 refundable fees to do so. The news comes several days after CEO Elon Musk tweeted that "excessive automation at Tesla was a mistake."
Tesla missed its target for Model 3 production last quarter amid reports of production struggles that Musk called “production hell.”
In the last six months, the company has struggled getting battery production up to speed, and with a relatively high proportion of parts that needed fixes, as it has worked to speed production of the vehicle that’s critical to its figure as a mass-market auto maker.