Thousands of Tesla fans poured into the automaker's new Austin, Texas, plant for its official opening, heralding a $1.1 billion facility that will vastly expand electric vehicle production and serve as a launching pad for future products like the highly anticipated Cybertruck pickup.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk said on Twitter last month that "scaling to extreme size" is part of the company's updated "master plan."
Musk inaugurated another new factory in Berlin last month and said there could be future plant announcements by the end of the year.
At the Austin event, prototypes for the Cybertruck and Semi cargo truck were on display.
Musk said Tesla had started deliveries of Texas-made Model Y vehicles, with a goal of producing half a million a year at the Texas factory, which he said would be the biggest car factory in the United States.
Tesla will start production next year of its Cybertruck as well as a humanoid robot, Optimus, Musk said.
On social media, Tesla fans streamed video from the Giga Texas plant, touring significant parts of the interior. Outside, a group of Tesla Model Y vehicles in red, white and blue were arranged to look like the Texas state flag. Some visitors wore cowboy-themed attire and there was a mechanical bull on display.
Even with the new plant focusing on Tesla's best-selling Model Y crossover, the company's global annual production is expected to rise from about 1 million vehicles last year to about 2 million in 2023, according to analysts.
Tesla now has four vehicle assembly plants with the addition of Austin and Berlin to Fremont, California, and Shanghai, China.