Tesla laying off workers at China factory, report says

Electric carmaker employs about 20,000 workers at its Gigafactory in Shanghai.

Tesla operates a manufacturing plant in Shanghai [File: Aly Song/Reuters]

Electric carmaker Tesla is laying off some battery production workers at its Shanghai plant, Bloomberg News reported, citing people familiar with the matter.

It was not clear how many workers may be let go, or the specific reasons behind the layoffs, according to the report published on Friday.

Tesla did not immediately respond to a request for comment sent by the Reuters news agency.

The layoffs were first reported by a local online news portal, Deep Analysis, on Thursday, which said fewer than 1,000 workers were employed on the factory’s two battery production lines.

Tesla’s Gigafactory Shanghai, its largest and most productive plant, employs about 20,000 workers, including those in assembly building the Model Y and Model 3.

Separately, Tesla said on Friday it would offer new buyers of its top-selling electric vehicles in China a cash bonus equivalent to almost $500 if they have a referral from an existing owner, deepening a price war in the world’s largest market for electric vehicles.

The EV maker said it would offer new buyers of its Model Y and Model 3 vehicles a cash rebate of 3,500 yuan ($483) if they could cite a referral from an existing owner.

Tesla also said new buyers would have free access to its enhanced autopilot driver-assistance system for 90 days.

Source: Reuters