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Tesla Model Y meets Sandy Munro, the king of lean auto manufacturing

Munro is pleased with the Model Y, but he says Tesla still has some work to do to build a perfect car.

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Sandy Munro is the guy to call when companies want to cut the excess and create a seriously lean product to roll down the manufacturing line. So he's just the person to comb over the Tesla Model Y. Autoline went inside Munro's facility with a Model Y Performance variant. In a video released Wednesday, he gave his first impressions of the car. 

Munro has decades of experience advising companies as CEO of Munro & Associates, a leading lean manufacturing consulting firm. But he gained a wider audience following a well-publicized teardown of a Tesla Model 3. He's also explained why the Cybertruck's odd design might be an engineering marvel. Now, he's ready to do the same with the Model Y. 

Long story short, Munro walked away impressed with the electric SUV. Fit and finish is leagues ahead of the Model 3 when it first started production, the manufacturing guru says, but it's also not perfect.

With a trusty gap-measuring device, he measures panel gaps on the hood, hatchback and other areas and finds a lot of inconsistencies, especially at the rear near the taillights. Most of them are things buyers likely won't notice, but other areas -- including the hood and taillights -- aren't exactly what should be expected of an SUV starting at $60,990 as shown.

Munro also remarks on the paint and notices dirt and other impurities stuck underneath the coat. Without actually being present inside the paint shop, he says it's hard to explain it, but it's another small thing he hopes Tesla will iron out.

But, overall, he likes it and has plenty of positives. The doors are bang-on with wonderful fit and finish, Munro loves the load level for the back hatch with a totally flat floor. He also thinks it drives mighty well. What we'll need to wait for is a total teardown, which is coming, he says. Then, he plans to compare every bit and piece to the Model 3 to give us the most in-depth comparison possible. We'll be waiting.

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First published April 2.