Tesla eyes Nashville for possible Cybertruck plant

Elon Musk says he's scouting sites in central USA

Tesla CEO Elon Musk introduces the Cybertruck at Tesla's design studio Thursday, Nov. 21, 2019, in Hawthorne, Calif. Musk is taking on the workhorse heavy pickup truck market with his latest electric vehicle. (AP Photo/Ringo H.W. Chiu)

Tesla Chairman Elon Musk says the car maker is looking at sites in the middle of America to make its all-electric Cybertruck and Model Y crossover and Nashville may be on the list of cities being considered for the new automotive plant.

In a tweet Tuesday night, Musk said he is "scouting locations" for the new electric-powered truck factory that he said "will be central USA."

The online web site Tech Crunch, which covers the technology industry, quoted a source saying Nashville is on a short list of contenders for the Tesla facility.

The triangular-shaped Cybertrucktruck was unveiled last November by Musk, who told analysts at the time "we'll sell as many as we can make" for at least three to four years.

"It's gonna be pretty nuts," he said.

Tesla's first Model Y vehicles are produced at its plant in Fremont, California, - a once former GM and Toyota facility that Tesla acquired in 2010. The first Tesla Model S was produced at the factory in June 2012.

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Tesla broke ground in 2014 on its first "Gigafactory" near Reno, Nevada, where the company produces battery packs and electric motors for its Model 3 vehicles.

Tesla also has the "Gigafactory 2" in Buffalo, New York, where it's producing solar cells and modules and is in a joint venture with Panasonic, which is making the lithium-ion cells.

But Musk is apparently looking inland for another U.S. production site that could include the Nashville area, Tech Crunch said.

Tennessee is already home to Nissan, which makes the electric-powered Leaf in Smyrna, and Volkswagen, which is preparing to make an electric-powered SUV in Chattanooga. Volkswagen is spending $800 million to expand its U.S. factory in Chattanooga to make the battery-powered SUV by 2022.

Tesla is also developing a factory in Shanghai to serve the Chinese market with its Model 3, scheduled for production later this year, and has broken ground for another factory near Berlin, Germany, to make the Model 3 and Model Y for the European market.