Tesla head honcho Elon Musk revealed in a tweet that the company is working on new, more efficient EV batteries that it aims to begin using in its upcoming Gigafactory near Berlin.
Musk noted that when the Berlin plant — which will likely open next year — will use a larger cylindrical 4680 format cell in its new structural battery pack. The company had unveiled this cell design at its recent Battery Day event last month.
We’d previously learned that this fourth Gigafactory is slated to begin producing a revamped Model Y with a “radical redesign” of its “core technology” in the second half of 2021, so that’s where this battery will be implemented.
He added that this move will introduce some production risk, and that it’ll take a couple of years for Tesla‘s Fremont- and Shanghai-based plants to adopt this technology.
Berlin will use 4680 cell with structural battery pack & front & rear single piece castings. Also, a new paint system.
Lot of new technology will happen in Berlin, which means significant production risk. Fremont & Shanghai will transition in ~2 years when new tech is proven.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) October 7, 2020
Electrek noted that this is a major change for the way this car is manufactured, as Musk mentioned new casting for the 4680; the vehicle’s rear and front underbody will need to be produced in single pieces of casting and linked with the battery pack, rather than mounting said battery pack on a chassis.
The move should not only make for a more efficient battery and increased range, but also a 56% reduction in cost per kWh. That could eventually give the company an edge in competing with rival EV makers in the coming years.
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