The Fremont plant builds every vehicle currently in Tesla’s lineup — the Model Y, 3, X and S — and last produced cars on March 23. Analysts at Credit Suisse estimate that the factory’s shutdown has been driving about $300 million of cash burn per week.
When Tesla was resisting calls to idle the factory last month, Fremont officials sought clarification from Alameda County as to whether the company was an essential business. Erica Pan, the county’s health officer, considered the plant to be a public health risk, according to documents obtained through a California public-records request.
Debate over how soon it will be safe for auto companies to reopen their factories is now dividing the industry. While carmakers including Volkswagen Group, Toyota Motor Corp. and Hyundai Motor Co. have said they intend to restart operations in early May, the UAW has said that’s too soon and too risky for its members, who work for General Motors, Ford Motor Co. and other manufacturers.