Tesla’s battery partner, Panasonic Corp, seeks to deliver as per the ever-increasing demands for battery cells because of the current Model 3 ramp, by raising its production capacity by 30%. Panasonic has been the exclusive battery partner for the electric car company.
Nikkan Kogyo, a Japanese news agency, reported on this Panasonic update, saying that the company will add 3 new cell production lines in Gigafactory 1 by the end of 20, for producing lithium-ion batteries. This will make the battery manufacturer have 13 lines in their possession, producing for Tesla’s electric cars and battery storage systems.
Last year, Tesla had faced obstacles in the production of Model 3 in Gigafactory 1 and the Fremont factory. Tesla was seemingly producing less than 3,000 vehicles per week, according to sources, as of May. Meanwhile, for the Japanese electronics giant, battery production turned out to be slow too.
Tesla reached their target of consistently making 5,000 Model 3 per week during the final week of June, requiring a capacity of 35 GWh per year, which they plan on achieving, with Panasonic. Yet, for them to achieve their Q2 goal, it required Panasonic’s cells made for Tesla household batteries in order to create Model 3 packs. But, Tesla Senior Director of Investor Relations, Aaron Chew, recently mentioned that the company has a new aim of maintaining a stable production rate of 10,000 Model 3 per week, which they are set to achieve by mid-2019. And Panasonic is here to support them for their 5,000-6,000 Model 3 per week, with its improved production capacity. We can also expect more extra upgrades and modifications for Gigafactory 1 soon.
Panasonic might have plans to invest more in Tesla Gigafactory battery production, and the added funding will go to the $1.6 billion investment they have in the battery factory, as Yoshio Ito said.