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Elon Musk calls humans underrated, needs more for Model 3 production – Roadshow

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Today will go down in the annals of history as the day that Elon Musk said that humans are underrated.

Yes, excessive automation at Tesla was a mistake. To be precise, my mistake. Humans are underrated.

— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) April 13, 2018

Seriously, he said that, and now the rest of us can lord it over him for all eternity. Your move, Musk. But really, the interesting thing is that it is an example of him admitting that not only was it a mistake to try so much automation in the Tesla production line, but that it was his mistake.

In a recent interview with Gayle King of CBS This Morning, Musk seemed confident that despite a lot of late nights, many of which have seen him sleeping at the factory, he has a clear idea of how to finally make Model 3 production efficient, and that involves having more human eyes and human hands on the line.

In the interview, King asked if the complex robotics involved with the production were slowing it down, to which Musk replied, “Yes, they did… We had this crazy, complex network of conveyor belts… And it was not working, so we got rid of that whole thing.”

Could having more people monitoring and helping the process along improve the overall quality of the vehicles coming out of the Tesla Fremont factory, something with which Tesla has historically struggled? It seems likely, particularly as the workforce that Tesla has hired matures and becomes more skilled.

The main takeaway from the CBS interview for us is that Musk is truly serious about digging his company out of its current production hell and getting buyers their cars. Hopefully, he can pull it off, because having Tesla around, if nothing else, has frightened other automakers into stepping up their electric car game, and that’s good for all of us.

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