Tesla seems to have appointed the next head of its 4680 battery program

(Credit: Tesla)

It appears that Tesla may have selected the next head of its ambitious 4680 battery cell program. Less than a month after former SVP Powertrain and Energy Engineering Drew Baglino left the company, Tesla appears to have named Bonne Eggleston as the next head of its 4680 battery cell division. 

Reports about Eggleston’s apparent appointment initially emerged in China, with tech publication LatePost stating that the newly-promoted executive had reportedly conducted a department-wide meeting where he announced a moratorium on layoffs. This does not mean that Tesla’s 4680 team will have any time to rest, however, as the report also noted that the company is reportedly looking to achieve its cost reduction targets by the end of the year. 

LatePost claimed in its report that Tesla is looking to achieve significant cost reductions compared to the price of comparable batteries from suppliers like Panasonic and LG Energy Solution. 

Citing people reportedly familiar with the matter, the Chinese publication claimed that Tesla had been aiming to make its self-produced batteries cheaper than those provided by suppliers at the beginning of this year. Battery department managers were reportedly informed at the time that Tesla may scrap its 4680 efforts if the target cost reductions were not achieved by the end of the year. 

Prior to Eggleston’s apparent appointment as the new head of Tesla’s 4680 program, the company’s battery materials department had reportedly laid off about half of its workforce. The 4680 team itself reportedly saw a 20% employee reduction, which effectively left just about 800 people.

Eggleston, for his part, seemed to have confirmed his apparent appointment as Tesla’s next 4680 program head. In a response to a post on X that discussed the LatePost report, Eggleston replied with two emojis that were taken by electric vehicle watchers as a subtle confirmation of the recent news. 

Tesla’s 4680 batteries are a key component of the company’s future. The batteries are currently being used in the Cybertruck, which is being produced at Giga Texas. Provided that Tesla masters the production ramp and cost reductions of its 4680 batteries, it would not be surprising if vehicles like the dedicated Robotaxi “Cybercab” will also be powered by the next-generation cells.

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Tesla seems to have appointed the next head of its 4680 battery program
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