2021-04-01 Tesla Can’t Make Enough Batteries

There are doom and gloom predictions that there will not be enough raw materials for building EVs, especially the batteries.



Pete Hahn
The demand for oil will drop as more vehicles become Electric. Hydrogen will be used for heavy transport – rail, ship and probably heavy trucks. There is a constraint on electrifying the transportation because batteries can’t be built fast enough. That’s why carmakers such as Tesla are building their own battery factories, along with buying all the batteries that battery manufacturers can make.

Tesla’s Kato road pilot plant is producing 10 GWh of the 4680 cells and they plan on doubling that. The Gigafactories being built in Berlin and Texas will also produce 4680 cells. There are constraints on making batteries fast enough but that is what Tesla is doing: making batteries faster. So far they’re successful at the Kato Rd. pilot plant.

Pete Hahn
Said, “Tesla… eliminate cobalt…”
The $25,000 model to be made in Shanghai uses LFP batteries made by CATL, which have zero cobalt. There are standard range models that also use LFP batteries. Your statement that “currently each Tesla has …4.5 kg cobalt” is not true.

The NHM article is two years old and since then Tesla’s engineers have had to make changes to manufacture within the real world constraints that have been encountered. The battery pack is the most expensive part of the EV and Tesla is working to develop the factory to make cells cheaper, faster, with less expensive raw materials and with battery manufacturers. They outlined many of these in their ‘Battery Day’ presentation in September 2020. They have a pilot plant and in a year or so will have the production lines running at Berlin and Austin, Texas.

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