Tesla shutting down Model S and X production lines for 18 days, hinting again at possible refresh

Tesla has emailed employees working on the Model S and Model X production lines informing them of a nearly three week shutdown extending into 2021.

According to the email, the shutdown will begin on Christmas eve and last until January 11 when the production line is expected to restart.

impacted employees will be be given one week of paid time off. The remaining time during the shutdown will be paid holidays due to Christmas and New Years, and 5 unpaid days off.

The employees were also encouraged to work in other parts of the factory or volunteer to help with deliveries to get as many cars into the hands of customers before the end of the year.

While Tesla did not provide a reason for the shutdown, it is fuelling speculation the automaker is preparing to re-tool the productions lines for a refresh.

Further evidence of a refresh showed up last month with delivery wait times for both the Model S and X extending into March 2021 for customers in Europe. Earlier this month some customers in North America were seeing wait time as long as 17 weeks.

In checking Tesla’s Design Studio for Canada and the US today, wait times for everything but the Long Range Plus Model S (2-3 weeks) are now sitting as 12 weeks.

Rumours of changes coming to the two most expensive vehicles in Tesla’s lineup has been going on for years as the design of the Model S is essentially the same as when it was released in 2012.

Tesla also recently completed a refresh of the popular Model 3 sedan, making several changes including factory black trim, a heat pump, and laminted (double pane) windows.

Here is a copy of the full email (via CNBC).

Subject: S/X Holiday Shutdown

Hi Team,

The SX lines will be shut down for the holidays starting Dec. 24th and returning Jan. 11th.

We would like you to take the opportunity to refresh or spend time with your family, so Tesla will be giving you a full week pay for the week of Jan. 4th. There will also be limited paid opportunities for you to support other shops or volunteer for deliveries during some of this time.

Dec. 23rd – last day of work before shutdown

Dec. 24th-25th – Paid holidays*

Dec. 28th-30th – Unpaid time off (may use PTO**), support deliveries or other shops.

Dec. 31st-Jan. 1st – Paid Holiday*

Jan. 4th – 8th – Paid time off (40 hours)

Jan. 11th – return to work

If you would like to volunteer for deliveries for Dec. 26th — Dec. 31st, or support other shops from Dec. 28th – Dec. 30th, please use the survey below to let us know your preference. We will do our best to accommodate your requests, but preferences are not guaranteed and will be granted on a first come first serve basis.

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