Luxury electric vehicle maker Tesla Inc has fired hundreds of workers after completing its annual performance reviews this week, even though the electric automaker is trying to ramp up production to meet the demand for its new Model 3 sedan.
The departures are part of an annual review, the Palo Alto, California-based company said in an email, without providing a number of people affected.
The maker of the Model S this week dismissed between 400 and 700 employees, including engineers, managers and factory workers.
“It’s about 400 people ranging from associates to team leaders to supervisors. We don’t know how high up it went,” said the former employee, who worked on the assembly line and did not want to be identified.
“As with any company, especially one of over 33,000 employees, performance reviews also occasionally result in employee departures,” the company said.
The company delivered 220 Model 3 sedans and produced 260 during the third quarter. In July, it began production of the Model 3, which starts at $35,000 – half the starting price of the Model S.
Tesla is under pressure to deliver its Model 3 to a waiting list of more than 450,000 customers. The company has been lagging behind its own production targets, after making just 260 of the vehicles in its last quarter.
The stocks was also hit last week by news of a voluntary recall of 11,000 Model X SUVs around the world over a problem with rear seats that may have been been improperly tightened, thus preventing them from locking in an upright position.