Tesla and LG Energy Solutions are reportedly in talks to produce the automaker’s new 4680 battery cell at a brand-new factory potentially in Europe or the US.
LG became one of Tesla’s official battery partners when it started supplying battery cells for the Model 3 vehicles produced by the latter in China.
It became only the second battery manufacturer, after Panasonic, to have its cells validated to be used in Tesla vehicles.
Since Tesla unveiled its own new battery cell designed in-house, the 4680, LG has been talking about expanding its role as a supplier for the electric automaker.
Last month, we reported on LG building a new pilot production line at a factory in Korea to produce the new Tesla battery cell.
Now Reuters reports in an exclusive that LG is planning to build Tesla’s new battery cell at a new factory that is going to be either in the US or Europe:
“LG plans to produce 4680 cells at its new US factory. They plan to build a new 4680 cell line to supply Tesla’s Giga Berlin in Europe,” one of the sources said, adding Spain is one of [the] candidates for the European plant.
LG has never produced such a large cylindrical battery cell, but Tesla has developed a new design and manufacturing techniques that enables a 46mm by 80mm cell.
Reuters sources said that Tesla hasn’t placed any orders with LG yet for the 4680 battery cell:
“He said LG has not yet secured orders from Tesla for the 4680 cells, still under development. For now, Tesla is sharply boosting orders for 2170 cells used in the Model 3 and Model Y vehicles made in China, the source said.”
4680 battery cell production at a new LG factory for Tesla would happen in 2023, according to the report.
Tesla has indicated that it plans to produce the 4680 battery cell itself at its own factories, but the automaker still plans to purchase battery cells from suppliers, and it has even discussed having suppliers produce its new battery cell designed in-house.
Panasonic has also been discussing building Tesla’s 4680 battery cell.
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