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Tesla Shutters Production Line of Model S and X Vehicles

By Danny Vena - Dec 14, 2020 at 3:03PM

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The Fremont factory will sit idle during the holidays.

Even as the company works to meet ambitious year-end production and delivery goals, Tesla ( TSLA -4.35% ) will be closing down its Fremont plant for 18 days over the holidays. That's according to an email sent to company employees of the California production facility, as reported by CNBC.

Staff working the production lines will receive a full week of pay as well as paid holidays during the two-and-a-half-week shutdown, which will begin on Dec. 24, with employees returning on Jan. 11. That leaves workers footing the bill for the additional three unpaid days between Dec. 28 and 30.

A Tesla Model S driving on a mountain road as the sun rises in the distance.

Image source: Tesla.

The missive also said, "We would like you to take the opportunity to refresh or spend time with your family" as the rational for supplying five days of paid time off during the week of Jan. 4. Staff wishing to work during the period are being encouraged to sign up for "limited paid opportunities" to support work in other parts of the factory or to make vehicle deliveries during the holidays.

The company's luxury sedan and high-end SUV have experienced weakening demand in recent years. The model S and model X combined accounted for roughly 11% of vehicle deliveries during the third quarter.

Tesla appears to be sending something of a mixed message. In a separate email to employees, CEO Elon Musk wrote that the company had a "high-class problem" of "demand being quite a bit higher than production this quarter." Musk went on to cite customer and investor expectations in encouraging employees to "increase production for the remainder of the quarter as much as possible."

The stock has been on fire this year, with Tesla shares gaining more than 660% so far in 2020.

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