Tesla has promised to halve the production costs of the next generation of its popular electric vehicles, a step that has ben described as crucial to its long term ambitious sales goals.

Tesla hopes to produce more cars than Volkswagen and Toyota combined – currently the two largest auto manufacturers – by 2030.

This represents a 10-fold increase from current capacity, with the total investment necessary expected to hit $175 billion (€164 billion), according to Zach Kirkhorn, the company’s chief financial officer.

The promise to cut production costs by half came from chief engineer Lars Moravy, who described an “unboxed” model involving the “snapping together” of sub-assemblies to reduce complexity and save time.

Chief executive Elon Musk, the public face of the company, admitted that lower prices for consumers would be key to the achievement of the company’s goals.

“The desire for people to own a Tesla is extremely high. The limiting factor is their ability to pay for a Tesla,” Mr Musk said.

However, he failed to announce a date by when the company would present a long-awaited affordable model, sending Tesla’s stock price down five per cent.

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