On Wednesday, Panasonic denied plans to launch a battery at its Gigafactory 3 superplant with Tesla, according tomedia reports. Panasonic is also known to supply batteries not only to Tesla’s Model S and Model X, but also to work with Tesla to produce the model 3 at its Super1 plant in Nevada.
Earlier, there had been rumours that Panasonic would work with Tesla to produce batteries in China, but Panasonic President Yukio Tsuka denied this. He said there were no plans to build a new battery plant in China for Tesla’s China operations.
In April, Elon Musk, Tesla’s chief executive, expressed his displeasure with his partner, Panasonic. Panasonic’s battery line at Tesla’s Nevada battery plant has been constraining Model 3 production, he said.
Since Tesla’s inception, Panasonic has been Tesla’s only battery supplier, except for being excluded from the short-lived Tesla Roadster 3.0 battery replacement program, but now that things are changing rapidly, Panasonic may no longer be Tesla’s only battery supplier.
Media said Tesla was close to reaching an agreement with several Chinese battery makers to supply superfactory 3, but expected the company to eventually produce its own batteries.
In August, people familiar with the matter said Tesla had reached a battery supply agreement with LG Chemical, the world’s second-largest lithium-ion battery maker, that the batteries would initially be used for the Model 3, which is produced at the Shanghai super plant, and later for model Y.
Earlier this month, people familiar with the matter said Tesla had reached a preliminary agreement with The Ninder Times (CATL). Starting next year, the Ningde era will be a battery supplier to China-made Tesla electric cars. Media said the two companies are expected to sign the battery supply agreement by mid-2020.
Recently, Tesla almost confirmed that it would produce its own batteries. In May, Tesla announced the completion of its acquisition of Maxwell, the battery maker. There is speculation that the acquisition is likely to be linked to Maxwell’s new lithium-ion electrode technology. Later, Tesla acquired an engineering company that specializes in making equipment for battery makers.