The rumors surrounding Tesla and its alleged battery supply deal with China-based company BYD were rekindled recently. Following a statement from a BYD Executive Vice President who mentioned that the company would soon be supplying batteries to Tesla, reports have now emerged suggesting that BYD’s batteries will be used in the Model Y crossover.
Tesla China is ramping quickly, and plans are underway to expand the company’s vehicle production output further. To accomplish this, Tesla is reportedly looking to build a new facility close to Gigafactory Shanghai. With this plant in place, Tesla China’s output could be doubled to about 1 million cars per year.
Such an output means that Tesla China would need to secure batteries for the vehicles it would produce. Today, Gigafactory Shanghai primarily relies on battery cells from CATL and LG Energy Solution. Once the company’s new electric car plant is online, however, Tesla would need far more batteries for its vehicles.
Citing a source that’s reportedly familiar with FinDreams Battery, the battery manufacturing arm of BYD, local motoring news outlet Auto Time noted that Tesla would initially be using BYD’s battery cells in the Model Y as early as next year. The publication’s source also noted that the two companies are moving forward carefully for now.
Rumors of Tesla using BYD batteries for its vehicles have been around since last year, but none of the rumors were confirmed. That is, at least, until recently, when BYD executive vice president Lian Yubo mentioned a battery deal with Tesla during an interview with state-owned media agency CGTN. “Tesla is a very successful company no matter what. BYD respects Tesla, and we admire Tesla. We are good friends with Elon Musk, and we will soon supply him with batteries. We are friends,” Yubo said.
BYD is a good choice for Tesla as its next battery supplier. While BYD is more known for its cars, the company has climbed up the ranks to become one of the world’s most formidable battery makers. With this in mind, a battery supply deal with Tesla could be beneficial for BYD, as it would greatly help legitimize the company’s growing battery cell business even further.
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