Tesla Motors is reportedly zeroing in on a 2,100-acre plot of land in southeast Austin, Texas as the base for its second Gigafactory in the country. According to Automotive News, the automaker has filed an application with an Austin-area school district in Travis County seeking tax abatement, and the new site will be the production base of the Cybertruck.

“Tesla is evaluating the possible development, design, and construction of an electric vehicle manufacturing plant in Travis County,” the filing stated. If all goes as planned, then construction of the new Tesla factory (its fourth for vehicle assembly) will begin in Q3 2020. It could also be manufacturing the Model Y for customers on the East Coast.

Currently, the 2,100-acre site is a ready-mix concrete facility owned by Martin Marietta Materials. The purported built-up area for the plant is between four to five million square feet, run by a team of at least 5,000 workers. If so, it will be the largest Tesla Gigafactory to date.

Prior to this, Tesla identified eight other states as viable contenders to build the site, and the automaker had received unspecified incentive packages ahead of the decision. The reason it chose Nevada for the battery factory in the first place was because the state offered US$1.3 billion (RM5.56 billion) in incentives.

The recent fracas between company CEO Elon Musk and Californian authorities also exacerbated his plans to relocate Tesla’s headquarters. Last month, Tesla restarted operations at its Fremont plant despite being told otherwise by Alameda County officials, which sparked fears that the move could undo the state’s efforts in combating the Covid-19 disease.

Musk continued to defy officials and threatened to move Tesla’s headquarters and future programmes to Texas or Nevada. Both states have eased restriction since the start of May.

To recap, Tesla bought its first factory in Fremont, California from Toyota Motor Corporation in 2010 for a lowly sum of US$42 million (RM180 million), a deal which took place during the global financial crisis.

Its second Gigafactory in Shanghai opened earlier this year and has already begun mass producing the Model 3, while another site is being erected in Berlin, Germany. The European plant is expected to be operational sometime next year.