Tesla Expects to Reach Mass Production of 4680 Battery Cells Next Year

Tesla Expects to Reach Mass Production of 4680 Battery Cells Next Year

Photo courtesy of Tesla, Inc.

Tesla introduced the 4680 battery cell seven months ago and has already made great strides in preparing for mass production. Elon Musk said the company is optimistic about this happening in 2022.

At the moment, Tesla has a small production line of the new battery cells in Fremont. The test line, a small battery factory, is already sizable compared to usual standards. The company expects it to achieve a production capacity of 10 gigawatt-hours per year in 2021. During the Q1 2021 Earnings Call, Tesla CEO Elon Musk reported that the company has made quite a few cells, but has not yet come to the point where they are reliable enough to be shipped in cars. Nevertheless, Tesla is already approaching this point, which is a great sign.

Musk said Tesla has already ordered most of the battery manufacturing equipment in Berlin, which shows the company is optimistic about the timeline. He said the company is preparing to begin volume production of 4680 battery cells in 2022.

"We are not quite yet at the point where we think the cells are reliable enough to be shipped in cars, but we are getting close to that point. And then we have already ordered most of the equipment for battery production in Berlin and then electric for Austin, as well. So we are really down to the nitty-gritty on this. But overall, I think, we are still quite optimistic about achieving volume production of the 4680 next year."

Tesla CFO Zachary Kirkhorn emphasized that the transition from prototype to production is a truly difficult task, but at the moment the company has already matured the process equipment to achieve the required level on the yield side. All things considered, Musk said Tesla will be ready to start volume production of 4680 cells in 12-18 months, which means that it will happen around mid-2022. Despite Tesla's success in developing and starting production of new cells, the company continues to incentivize its battery suppliers to increase production and supply.

"And basically, this is just a guess because we don't know for sure, but it appears as though we are about 12, probably, not more than 18 months away from volume production of the 4680. Now at the same time, we are actually trying to have our cell supply partners ramp up their supply as much as possible. So this is not something that is to the exclusion of suppliers. It is in conjunction with suppliers."

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About the Author

Eva Fox

Eva Fox

Eva Fox joined Tesmanian in 2019 to cover breaking news as an automotive journalist. The main topics that she covers are clean energy and electric vehicles. As a journalist, Eva is specialized in Tesla and topics related to the work and development of the company.

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