Tesla announced the new 4680 battery cell at its Battery Day last year. The 4680 battery cell is supposed to be revolutionary, due to its energy density, low cost, and more. However, it may be a while before it comes to market. On the other hand, perhaps it will arrive sooner rather than later not since battery suppliers are competing with one another to get a 4680 contract from Tesla.
It comes as no surprise battery makers are racing to get a contract to produce and supply Tesla with these next-gen EV batteries. They're big news in the Tesla community, and fans and owners are waiting in anticipation of the new batteries arriving.
There's a good chance the upcoming Tesla Cybertruck and Semi may not be possible without 4680 cells. Some folks have speculated that the Model S Plaid+ was canceled since 4680 cells are still unavailable. This would mean the upcoming Tesla Roadster may need the new cells as well. Musk has promised the Model Y will use them, too, and we could see Model Y crossovers coming out of Texas (or even Berlin) by the end of the year.
According to a recent report from The Korea Herald, multiple battery manufacturers and suppliers are making 4680 prototypes to test and forward to Tesla. The article shares:
“Samsung SDI and LG Energy Solution have developed samples of cylindrical 4680 cells and are currently conducting various tests at their facilities to verify their structural integrity. Also, they have provided specifications of their 4680 cells to their vendors.”
Tesla plans to produce its own 4680 cells, and it already has a pilot facility that's producing them in small volume. Panasonic, Tesla's primary battery supplier and partner, is reportedly working on the 4680 cells as well. Tesla also gets battery cells from LG Chem and CATL.
The automaker has said that while it will make its own batteries, it will not hesitate to lean on suppliers. Demand for Tesla's vehicles is high and rising, so Tesla will arguably need all the battery cells it can get its hands on going forward.
At this point, it seems the issue isn't as much that the 4680 cells can't be produced, but rather, they're not yet available in large enough volume to begin putting into vehicles. Moreover, the testing process is likely extensive, and it wouldn't be wise for Tesla to start delivering cars with 4680 cells before the battery tech is proven safe.
When do you expect to see 4680 cells in Tesla's vehicles? Leave us your thought in the comment section below.