On Wednesday, July 18, I was part of a small Autodesk group that took a tour of the Tesla factory in Fremont. Unlike this San Francisco Chronicle reporter, we signed a nondisclosure agreement (NDA) that we wouldn't share any information that we learned while on the tour; however, we were able to take pictures while waiting for the tour.
Model 3 (see the test drive report in The Wall Street Journal)
It was humorous to see that Tesla is offering models S, 3, X (Ford owns the rights the Model E name, and 3 is a backward E). Already having the rights to the name, Model Y, according to Ashley Vance's Elon Musk book (see blog post), Tesla's original plan was to offer models S, E, X, Y.
While still honoring the NDA, I can tell you that Tesla's mission is to accelerate the world's transition to sustainable energy. Our Autodesk group was led by Autodesk VP of Corporate Strategy, Jon Pittman. This turned out to be fitting because Jon had recently written about how he works for Autodesk for its sense of purpose ("Career Advancement Through Purpose: When Being So Good Can Be Bad"). From the factory tour, it was clear that employees at Tesla also work there out of a sense of purpose.
Tesla is a company about sustainability, and cars are just vehicles to achieve that purpose. The same battery technologies that power their cars are also the solution for the Tesla Powerwall, a home battery that integrates with traditional solar panels. Tesla also makes a Solar Roof that complements a home's architecture with roof tiles that turn sunlight into electricity.
A better world is alive in the lab.