Tesla Engineers, Technicians, Sales Staff, Recruiters Hit By Layoffs In U.S. And China

By automotive-mag.com 3 Min Read

It has been a tumultuous year for Tesla so far, and for Tesla, that’s really saying something.

The world’s most highly valued car company and the largest battery electric vehicle manufacturer saw its sales plummet in the first quarter, followed by a major reshuffling of its future strategy. Plans for the affordable $25,000 EV have somewhat disappeared into oblivion, while a deeply unproven Robotaxi concept has reportedly captured CEO Elon Musk’s full attention.

Amidst this pandemonium, mass layoffs are currently underway at Tesla, coinciding with the departure of several top executives. When reports of job cuts surfaced yesterday, it was unclear which divisions would be affected. The automaker has Gigafactories in California, Texas, Berlin, and Shanghai, with planned projects in Mexico and potentially India.

Documents seen by InsideEVs suggest that job cuts are affecting several roles. This includes project managers, automation engineers, ergonomics designers, and data analysts, among others.

The firing spans across the U.S.—the majority of that in the San Francisco Bay Area and Austin, Texas. Several roles are being slashed in Dallas, New York, Toronto and Palo Alto as well. The document suggests job cuts of at least 140 people, mostly engineers.

On the other side of the planet, two sources Reuters spoke to said more than 10% of Tesla China’s sales team were losing their jobs, whereas a relatively small proportion of employees working at Gigafactory Shanghai, Tesla’s largest global manufacturing and export hub by volume, would be let go.

German media is reporting that 3,000 of Tesla Germany’s 12,000 workforce have been fired. Yet, some 686 Tesla job postings are open in Germany alone. Tesla Germany has refuted the German media reports. “We will pursue the measure for Gigafactory Berlin-Brandenburg against the background of all labor law and co-determination requirements, bringing in the works council,” a Tesla Germany official told Reuters.

Tesla’s global headcount is estimated to be somewhere around 140,000, according to Elektrek. A 10% reduction would mean a whopping 14,000 job cuts. So the layoffs could be underway for several more days. We’ll know its true impact in the next few weeks.

No other brand has electrified the auto industry in the same way as Tesla, especially in the U.S. After four years of aggressive growth, it’s hard to predict if this rough patch will be prolonged, or if the brand will bounce back in the next quarter. 

Do you know anyone affected by Tesla’s layoffs who has something to share? Feel free to contact the author at [email protected].

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