Today, Tesla has confirmed a significant breakthrough in 4680 battery cell production at Gigafactory Texas as it produced its 20 millionth battery cell at the factory.
We haven’t had many updates on Tesla’s 4680 battery cell production, which is believed to be critical to the automaker’s new vehicle programs, like the Cybertruck. Tesla unveiled the 4680 cell, its first cell designed from the ground up, at Battery Day in 2020.
The automaker claimed the potential to reduce battery cost by over 50% with the new design; it has been trying to bring it to volume production since but has run into some bottlenecks.
We got a few updates about the ramp-up over the last few years, but Tesla always refused to disclose its production rate – until now – to some degree.
Today, Tesla announced that it has built its 20 millionth 4680 cell at Gigafactory Texas:
It now gives us some idea of the production rate since Tesla announced the production of the 10 millionth 4680 cell at Giga Texas in June.
Therefore, we know that Tesla produced 10 million 4680 cells in the last 16 weeks.
That’s an average of 625,000 cells per week, but it is fair to assume that production is now well above this average. Let’s say 800,000 cells per week, just to play it safe.
Tesla’s 4680 cell is believed to have a capacity of about 26 Ah, though it might have improved recently – there’s no way to know.
This means that Tesla’s 4680 cells are roughly 100 Wh and that Tesla is producing about 80 MWh of 4680 battery cells per week at Gigafactory Texas. At a battery pack capacity of 65 kWh, that would be enough to produce over 1,200 vehicles per week.
We can slash that number in half for producing Cybertrucks with a battery pack of about 130 kWh, which is only an estimate of the potential battery pack capacity for the electric pickup truck.
This is major progress. We are talking about the production of about 4 GWh per year.
We are still far from the over 100 GWh per year that Tesla aims to eventually produce at Gigafactory Texas, but we are still already talking about large-scale volume production of battery cells.
Also, my estimate here is on the conservative side. I wouldn’t be surprised if Tesla is currently over 1 million battery cells per week at Gigafactory Texas, and there could have been energy density improvements pushing the capacity over 100 Wh per cell.
I think this is overall great news and potentially exceptional news if my estimate proves too conservative.
What do you think? Let us know in the comment section below.
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