Tesla Taps Chinese and Korean Suppliers to Boost EV Battery Capacity and Affordability

Tesla seeking help from suppliers to improve the energy capacity and reduce their costs. Musk’s plan to manufacture 20 million vehicles per year.

Elon Musk looks forward to creating better and more affordable batteries to produce more cars to meet the company’s goal. To achieve this goal, the company is enlisting the help of materials suppliers from China and Korea to enhance the energy capacity and reduce the costs of their latest battery cells.

Despite some difficulties in battery performance and production that have led to the postponement of its Cybertruck launch, Tesla is moving forward with its plans. According to insiders, the company has reached out to Ningbo Ronbay New Energy and Suzhou Dongshan Precision Manufacturing from China to help reduce materials costs as they scale up production of the 4680 battery cells in the US.

Until now, no information hasn’t been shared about the specific details of these partnerships.

However, if Tesla successfully resolves the issues related to battery performance and production, for which the company seems optimistic, the 4680 battery cells could be a critical component of CEO Musk’s plan to manufacture 20 million vehicles per year by 2030.

According to sources, to achieve this goal, Tesla has also entered into an agreement with L&F, a company based in Korea, to supply high-nickel cathodes that could enhance the energy density of the 4680 cells.

Tesla plans to acquire 4680 cells from LG Energy Solution in Korea and Panasonic in Japan to secure future EV production, besides its production.

During an investor meeting earlier this March, Elon Musk expressed concern about a shortage of batteries, which can halt production at the factories.

The new 4680 battery is a critical component in the upcoming launch of the Cybertruck, Tesla’s latest model, which is expected to debut later this year. The Cybertruck boasts a bold design made from stainless steel and has been eagerly anticipated by fans of the company.

To ensure the launch is successful and on schedule, Tesla evaluated three battery options: the smaller 2170 cells found in other Tesla models, the more affordable lithium iron phosphate cells, and the 4680 cells.

There haven’t been any reports on Tesla’s battery strategy for the Cybertruck, including the decision to use the 4680 cells and consideration of other options.

In 2022, Elon Musk stated that he didn’t anticipate that the 4680 batteries would create restrictions for the Cybertruck or other models.

Why is it called 4680?

The 4680 cell, named for its external dimensions of 46mm diameter and 80mm length, is a critical component in Tesla’s plans for future production. This new battery cell is 5.5 times larger than the previous 2170 cell, storing five times more energy and providing 16% more driving range.

It’s said that Tesla plans to manufacture various versions of this battery at its California, Texas, Nevada, and Berlin factories. These cells will be used in models ranging from Model Y to Cybertruck.

Despite this, Tesla is still experiencing challenges in scaling up production for the first stock of these batteries, according to the 1 March investors meeting.

Written by Muhammad Tanveer