Tesla’s gigafactory in Gruenheide near Berlin faces the risk of a “massive delay,” Automobilwoche reported, citing people close to the matter it didn’t identify.

Delays may hit the car plant, at which critical buildings haven’t yet been erected, and the manufacturing site for battery cells, for which the company hasn’t so far applied for a building permit with the state office, the magazine said, questioning whether production can start in five months as planned.

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Tesla will also receive far less than the one billion euros ($1.2 billion) in government aid for the battery part of the project that was under consideration, the magazine said. Such aid is typically granted in the form of tax benefits, write downs or interest-free loans for 20 per cent to 30 per cent of the total sum invested, the magazine said, adding that the entire site to make batteries may cost less than the potential aid figure that has been circulating.

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Tesla and other manufacturers last month got approval for a slice of the $3.5 billion in battery aid from the European Union, and Elon Musk said the site near Berlin could end up becoming the largest battery-cell plant in the world.