Tesla CEO Elon Musk has confirmed that the Model Y produced from Gigafactory Texas would be launching with 4680 battery cells. The update was related by Musk in a recent interaction on Twitter.
While discussing Gigafactory Berlin’s Model Y program, Musk was asked by FSD Beta tester and Model 3 owner @WholeMarsBlog if Austin would begin its Model Y production using 2170 cells like the vehicles being produced at the Fremont Factory today, or if Giga Texas would jump straight to 4680 cells. Musk’s response was brief, but it was direct, with the CEO confirming that Model Ys from Austin would start production with 4680 batteries.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 18, 2021
Musk’s update bodes well for Tesla’s vehicle production ramp in Gigafactory Texas and its ongoing 4680 battery ramp. Since Battery Day last year, Tesla has been quite conservative with its estimates about when its custom battery cells would be rolled out. This was highlighted in the Q1 2021 earnings call when Elon Musk remarked that Tesla was about 12-18 months away from the volume production of its 4680 cells.
“This is just a guess because we don’t know for sure, but it appears as though we’re 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 of 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. So we want to be super clear about that,” Musk said.
Interestingly enough, in the same earnings call, Elon Musk also noted that limited production of vehicles should start at Gigafactory Texas sometime this year, with volume production hitting its stride in 2022. Considering that Gigafactory Texas would be launching with the Model Y, it appears that the company is, at least to a point, confident that its 4680 batteries will be ready for customer deliveries this year.
The 4680 cells are Tesla’s ticket to the mainstream auto market. Designed for rapid, easy production and optimized for power and safety, Tesla’s 4680 batteries have the potential to change the EV landscape. The batteries play a big part in Tesla’s goal of producing 20 million cars per year by 2030. After all, to achieve such a gargantuan goal, Tesla must have access to an equally massive number of cells. A good way to accomplish this would be for Tesla to help its suppliers by producing its own batteries.
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