Tesla Model 3 Battery Cell Production Now Underway

Tesla Model 3



Tesla Model 3

Official confirmation from Tesla’s J.B. Straubel assures that the Gigafactory has started battery cell production for the upcoming Model 3.

The new 2170 cells are specifically for use in the Model 3. As we previously reported, Tesla began making 2170 cells at the beginning of the year, but those were for use in second-generation Powerwalls and Powerpacks.

Tesla co-founder and Chief Technology Officer, J.B. Straubel, delivered a keynote speech in Wisconsin over the weekend, at the Midwest Renewable Energy Association’s 28th Annual Energy Fair. During the speech he specified that the 2170 cell production was starting, and that it was exclusively for the Tesla Model 3.

Tesla Model 3

2170 Cells for the upcoming Tesla Model 3

Regardless of all the other details that still must fall into place to assure timely Model 3 production, including counting on a myriad of suppliers, the fact that battery production is underway is a significant step.

Analysts predicting Model 3 production numbers have pointed out that the batteries will be made at the same time as the car, in different locations, which could cause a slowdown in production speed (although we tend to think this issue is a non-starter). Getting as many batteries made ahead of vehicle production will certainly prove advantageous.

The 2170 cells are made at the Tesla Gigafactory, in partnership with Panasonic.

At this point, neither company has released a wealth of information about the new cells, aside from the fact that they are cheaper, and more energy dense than the 18650 cells they replace. In fact, Musk calls them the most energy dense production cells in the world.

Tesla plans to reach Gigafactory capacity to make enough batteries for a half-million cars by the end of 2018. After that, Musk has big plans for additional Gigafactories (as many as 10 to 20 globally), to push the production capability up to a whopping 12-24 million vehicles per year at Tesla’s pinnacle.

Source: Electrek

Categories: Tesla

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24 Comments on "Tesla Model 3 Battery Cell Production Now Underway"

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(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

What would be cool is if any Joe Schmuck can buy a dozen of these cells to tinker with.

It would be interesting, but for now Tesla should use every battery they can make to build TM3’s. I’ve sure somebody will total a Model 3 soon enough so junkyard packs will become available for folks to play with.

A dozen should be enough to get your model car going, but that’s about it.

Google for Panasonic / Sanyo NCR20700B. They are available at various retailers and possibly quite close…

You can buy as much as you want 20700 form factor batteries from Panasonic/Sanyo, or now from Samsung and other suppliers too, in few modifications. I don’t think anybody in his right mind would want to tinker with individual protection-free cells designed for packs, but these may be available too. As if form factor makes big difference for somebody.

This is it…
The beginning of the end for legacy automakers.

You make it sound like everyone actually wants what Tesla is selling.

That’s a monumental prediction.

I will wait for Tesla Pickup specs before I buy my next truck, but somehow I think Ford (or GM or RAM) will build a better truck, even if the electric drivetrain isn’t “Tesla Grade”

I agree with the previous, the legacy OEMs better get busy or they are dead! After driving a Leaf (an admittedly inferior 1st gen car) for 6 years it’s obvious that EVs are the better technology. When cars with better batteries are widely available people will want everything to have the superior technology. If GM and Ford won’t build EV trucks someone else will!

In the last 4 years global car sales rose by 7.000.000 to 78.000.000. Tesla delivered 76.230 cars in 2016. Global car sales grew 100 times more than Tesla in the last few years in absolute numbers. For 1 Factory Tesla creates, others create many. Does not sound like the end of legacy car makers.

Even if Tesla would grow by 40% each year, they’d need until 2032 to reach companies like VW. Thats why Teslas stock is overpriced. 10-15years of perfect operations are needed to create the value their stock value promises today.

Go Tesla Go !!!

Can’t wait to get my Model 3 🙂

Really, 18750 cells? I think not.

‘18750 cells’ looks like a finger missed a spot when trying to type 18650 cells!

It’s a secret sizing, you wouldn’t know, heeh. Small typo there by Steve – fixed!


Actually, if cells from the factory are just starting Production on the June 16th Weekend, Panasonic must have a small test line in Japan to build small volumes of these cells, to verify their calculations, sample for the ‘Release Candidates’, and able to be used for a few Early Production cars, if needed.

They’ve been producing these cells for a while at the gigafactory already… So no need for Japanese versions.

“Panasonic must have a small test line in Japan to build small volumes of these cells, to verify their calculations, sample for the ‘Release Candidates’, and able to be used for a few Early Production cars, if needed.”

That’s what we’ve been told, and by those who know more than I do, so presumably it’s true.

* * * * *

@David Murray:

No. Read the article above.

The cell chemistry for PowerWalls and PowerPacks will be different than those for EVs, even if it’s the same 2170 form factor. EV battery packs need high power output; PowerWalls don’t, but do need to be able to withstand being cycled every day for several years.

Tesla is making the right moves.

I don’t think those 10+ gigafactories would be meant for vehicles only. Tesla making 24 mil. cars a year is a bit of a stretch I believe, would like to be wrong however…

I realize that some rather wildly different numbers have been cited by Elon for future output of Gigafactory 1, but I think you rather overstate the case by suggesting that one factory will supply 2.4 million BEVs.

If Gigafactory 1 will supply the ~500,000 BEVs which Tesla plans to make annually within 2-3 years, then that means Tesla would need 2 Gigafactories per million cars. Supposedly each Gf would also have some extra capacity which would be used to supply PowerWalls and PowerPacks, altho if that market grows to a respectable size it would make sense to dedicate one or more Gfs to that market alone.

How do you know they won’t all just make their transitions to EVs & PHEVs, as required?

Elon has said many times he can’t do this alone, and his goal was for “legacy automakers” to jump on board.

* was supposed to be in response to Big Show.

The point is that legacy automakers are being left behind. Even when they finally realize they need to get on board, they won’t have the cell capacity (or suppliers) for hundreds of thousands of EVs per year.
However, I agree with Kdawg that Elon can’t do it alone. The few automakers that are currently making an effort, such as Chevrolet, will be much better off than laggards such as Ford.

Kdawg — “How do you know they won’t all just make their transitions to EVs & PHEVs, as required?”

We know they are actively resisting the transition, because they are lobbying through their hired lobbyist organizations to undo laws that would require them to build EV’s and PHEV’s.

First it was face ugly. Now, it is butt ugly too.
The onlyk thing I like in Model 3 are the wheels. They are nicely rounded.