Rare Look Inside A Tesla Model S Battery Pack

3 years ago by Ted Dillard 30

2014-08-19 19.13.08-1280

Tesla Model S battery

Seeing things taken apart that probably shouldn’t be is right up there in our book alongside actually taking things apart ourselves (that probably shouldn’t be).  Lucky for us, and anyone else who is dying to know what’s inside that magical box called “Tesla Battery Pack” there’s a man who goes by “wk057” on the Tesla Motors Club who not only wanted to know, but went about finding out.

Here’s his post: Pics/Info: Inside the battery pack, from the Tesla Motors Club owners forum.  Go get yourself a cup of coffee and settle in for a good read before you click that link.

By kind permission of “wk057”, we’re going to give you just a little tease of what you can see a whole lot more of on his post.  Roll tape:

2014-08-19 16.08.36

Tesla battery pack removed from car

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Removing the top cover

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Battery modules

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Cell connection detail

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Modules being removed, base plate wells visible

There’s plenty more on that thread, and lots of interesting discussion and explanation of all the little bits and pieces you’re seeing.

A HUGE thanks to wk057 for taking the time to post his hard work and letting us share it!

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30 responses to "Rare Look Inside A Tesla Model S Battery Pack"

  1. GeorgeS says:

    Great find. Thx for the post and the link.

    Looks tuff for a do it yourselfer unless you compeltely understand the TMS and how it works.

    You’d need to be a software guru too.

    1. See Through says:

      I thought, Tesla doesn’t want anyone to open up the battery assembly to protect their battery secrets.
      Wonder, how many Chinese Teslas were purchased only for reverse engineering the battery assembly.

      1. CherylG's_DirtyLittleSecret says:

        There’s nothing special about the pack itself.
        The Chinese already know how to put xxSnnP 18650 cells together…..lol

        1. MDEV says:

          There is nothing special about trolls

      2. Jouni Valkonen says:

        Seriously, See Through! Do you seriously think that Tesla would have opensourced all its patents if it had cared that their technology ends up into competitors hands.

  2. Bob A says:

    Wonder how many of those packs one could fit in a frunk.

    There appears to be 224 cells per battery with 2 batteries in a bay. 32 batteries altogether. that’s about 2.66 kWhr per battery.

    Wonder how the 60kWhr battery differs.

    Thanks for the pictures. Very cool.

    1. Steven says:

      I would imagine a reduced number of either cells from the center four modules.

      Or elimination of a couple of centerline modules. So as to maintain the F/R balance while maintaining the standard layout of each module.

      1. Steven says:

        Well that was sloppy wording… Sorry, I haven’t had my coffee yet.

  3. David Murray says:

    I get the impression this battery pack will never be going back together again…

    1. The battery case was already sent to salvage. The cells are in 24-25 volt modules in the Model S. The owner will put those in 48-50 volt assemblies for his solar storage.

  4. Taser54 says:

    I like to leave a large screwdriver around.

  5. Alex says:

    Great work, first private open or? BMW and VW opened it also 2 years ago, I know an engineer from BMW he told me.But until now, it seems they don’t learn how to build a Tesla :-).

  6. firstpl@gmail.com says:


    I was the supplier of this battery. Anyone interested please contact me.

    1. kalle says:

      just out of curiosity, how much does a battery pack cost?

      1. EV says:


  7. io says:

    Nice, thanks! Wow… This indeed can’t be cheap…

  8. JRMW says:

    I’m amazed by how smart many EV enthusiasts are.

  9. Ocean Railroader says:

    I would love to divide up this battery pack beast and put the modular sections into a Mitbushi i-miev to double the range of the 62 mile EV.

  10. Anon says:

    Someone has an expensive curiosity…

    Would think this pack is not going back for warranty OR eventual swapping.

  11. James says:

    Hey! No battery swapping talk here, OK? I mean, this isn’t ~ that kind of site!


  12. James says:

    I’d be tempted to snag a couple of those for my glovebox LED flashlight. Ya think anybody’d notice?

  13. The case looks like it’s 40 years old military stuff.

    1. Anon says:

      You mean over-engineered and overbuilt looking?


      I can see how a prismatic form factor could save them on packaging weight / cost…

  14. John Hollenberg says:

    After seeing the inside, I think I will stick with my Leaf and put a new “Lizard” battery in when I lose too much capacity. Looks like there is a lot that could go wrong.

  15. MDEV says:

    Impressive thank you, I wonder if this pack came from a salvage car.

  16. Nick says:

    Wow! That pack looks insane.

    I think I now understand why other auto manufacturers prefer large format cells.

  17. Dailos says:

    The battery pack can be sold? and if it’s possible , where?

  18. Curtis Ling says:

    i wonder if you can power a tesla using disposable AA batteries

    1. Ted Dillard says:

      Not a Tesla shown here, but yes: http://evworld.com/news.cfm?newsid=15888