Tesla adds more battery suppliers to the equation as the company needs more cells at new production sites.
It's hard to track any details from any of those companies ("LG Chem declined to comment", "CATL did not respond... requests for comment", "Tesla was not immediately available to comment"), but it seems that at least for China (Tesla Gigafactory 3), Tesla will use LG Chem and CATL batteries.
It's not yet known whether Panasonic is also engaged in battery supply for the Gigafactory 3 in Shanghai.
Panasonic, the primary supplier of batteries for Tesla cars produced in the U.S. and key partner at the Tesla Gigafactory in Nevada, probably will remain the primary supplier, as the deals with LG Chem and CATL are reportedly smaller:
"Tesla, which has a long-standing battery supply agreement with Japan’s Panasonic Corp, said its pact with LG Chem and CATL was at a smaller scale."
Panasonic is supplying Tesla with:
- 18650 type cylindrical cells produced in Japan for cars like the Model S and Model X
- 21700 type cylindrical cells produced in North America (at the Tesla Gigafactory) for newer models, like Model 3/Model Y and Semi
The Made-in-China (MIC) Model 3 is reportedly equipped with locally produced LG Chem cells.
At this stage, it's not clear whether both LG Chem and CATL will supply Tesla at the Gigafactory 3, or maybe at least part of the deal is for upcoming production at the Tesla Gigafactory 4 in Europe (within two years).