After months of anticipation (and one arrest), the world is finally getting its first glimpse at the inside of Tesla Motors’ new Gigafactory in Nevada. Photographer James Lipman has posted the first photo of the interior on Instagram, along with a few shots of the site. There’s some speculation he may be working on a commercial shoot for the company, in which case we look forward to seeing more soon.
Before this, the only pictures anyone had seen of the site were overhead shots captured by aerial drone. One journalist who tried to sneak onto the property for a closer look was actually arrested back in October, potentially facing charges for assault after an altercation with employees.
The massive building, which is planned to include more than 10 million square feet of floor space, will produce enough batteries to power 500,000 cars per year. When it’s completed, it will be the world’s second largest building by volume. (Although there have been hints that it might grow to be even bigger.) Better yet? Despite the massive size of the building, Tesla is aiming to power it completely with renewable energy.
While that’s noteworthy in and of itself, what’s most exciting about the factory is how it could play a role in finally making electric vehicles more affordable. The company estimates that by scaling up its battery production, it will be able to reduce prices by 30 percent. That would mean the Model 3 would be available for only $35,000, a huge reduction off the current $70,000 starting price for a Tesla vehicle.
Images via James Lipman