Made in Germany Tesla Model Y Spotted in Norway, Hides More Than a Few Surprises

The first pre-production Model Y units left the Gigafactory Berlin as early as last December and now it appears some of them are undergoing winter testing in Norway. People who spotted the cars uncovered interesting facts, like having a much bigger maximum payload than the “Made in China” units that were available up until now.
Made in Germany Tesla Model Y spotted in Norway 6 photos
Photo: @Gf4Tesla via Twitter
Made in Germany Tesla Model Y spotted in NorwayMade in Germany Tesla Model Y spotted in NorwayMade in Germany Tesla Model Y spotted in NorwayMade in Germany Tesla Model Y spotted in NorwayMade in Germany Tesla Model Y spotted in Norway
Gigafactory Berlin is an interesting topic and people have anxiously waited for the first cars to roll out the production line. Although the official opening is still on the horizon, expectations were fulfilled when the first cars were spotted leaving the factory, a month ago. Those were pre-production units that helped calibrate the tools in the factory and are now tested in various environments, or even crashed to assess their safety performance.

Some of the luckier ones ended up in Norway, as it seems, to undergo winter testing in the cold northern climate. Of course, they could not escape the expert eyes of Tesla fans, who ran their VINs through various checking services, revealing interesting facts about them. All of them were Tesla Model Y Performance, while some had German plates and others were already on Norwegian plates.

One of the first things that surfaced during this scrutiny was the higher payload of the German model compared to the regular Chinese one. According to, the German-made car has a maximum payload of 562 kg (1,239 lbs) compared to 390 kg (860 lbs) for the Made in China version. This huge difference (44%) suggests significant structural changes to the vehicle. No doubt this is down to the new production process at Giga Berlin that uses mega-casting and structural batteries.

The finding, although interesting, does not guarantee the cars produced in Germany are any different from those made in China. It might be that Tesla is testing future configurations that will enter production much later. Gigafactory Berlin is expected to go live in March.

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About the author: Cristian Agatie
Cristian Agatie profile photo

After his childhood dream of becoming a "tractor operator" didn't pan out, Cristian turned to journalism, first in print and later moving to online media. His top interests are electric vehicles and new energy solutions.
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