Tesla and Panasonic will partner to mass-produce batteries for the California manufacturer’s electric vehicles.
Panasonic to contribute an undisclosed sum to a proposed $4 billion to $5 billion Tesla “Gigafactory.”
The factory is expected to employ approximately 6,500 workers, producing batteries for 500,000 vehicles per year by 2020.
Gigafactory location is undisclosed, but sites in Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California are under review.
Tesla has found a partner for its proposed “Gigafactory,” a proposed 500 to 1,000-acre facility that will produce batteries for the electric vehicle manufacturer’s massive expansion by 2020. Panasonic will contribute an “undisclosed sum,” according to CNNMoney, toward the construction of the factory.
Once up and running, Panasonic will build the lithium ion cells that make up the Tesla battery packs. Tesla and Panasonic will work together to develop a supply network.
The proposed cost of the factory will be $4 billion to $5 billion, and will pave the way for Tesla to produce its less-expensive car, the recently announced Model 3.
Tesla currently produces the Model S, which is selling at a rate of 1,500 vehicles a month. That’s a strong figure, but the base price of $69,000 is an insurmountable obstacle to major success in the marketplace.
The Model 3 offers the range of the Model S, but in a much less expensive, mass-market automobile with a price in the $35,000 range. That’s expected to push Tesla sales up from the 35,000 units it sells currently to somewhere around 500,000 by 2020.
Tesla hasn’t disclosed where it’s going to build its 500 to 1,000 acre factory, expected to employ 6,500 people. Currently, Texas, Arizona, New Mexico and California are in the running.