Tesla Model 3 greater range from better batteries
We knew that recent upgrades of the Tesla Model 3 had led to an increase in range. Now more details about the battery of the revised Model 3 have come to light in documents Tesla sent to recent European clients.
According to the new data, the long-range version of the new Model 3 has a battery capacity of 82 kWh, three kilowatt-hours more than the previous model. As reported, the Panasonic cells manufactured in Nevada are said to have a five per cent higher energy density since September, and the company also reduced cobalt content to below five per cent.
In October, Tesla released the revised Model 3 in the configurator. In addition to new range data (the long-range model now has a range of up to 580 kilometres after WLTP), there were also some minor optical changes, such as new rims or the elimination of chrome details. Besides, Tesla made some interior adjustments (new centre console and omission of the piano black finish), and the Model 3 now has an electrically opening tailgate.
For a change, the information about the 82 kWh batteries has not come from the USA, but Germany. Since documents such as the Registration Certificate Part II are required for the registration of the vehicles before delivery, Tesla has already sent this document to some buyers who will have their new Model 3 Long Range delivered in late November or early December. A photo of a vehicle registration certificate (or officially: Registration Certificate Part I) has been published in the tff forum, where a battery capacity of 82 kWh is registered.
Compared to the previous 79 kWh, this represents an increase of 3.8 per cent and thus not quite the five per cent more energy Panasonic claims to have achieved with its cells. Some of the innovations in the cells cannot be directly transferred to the complete battery pack. It is also possible that the actual change is greater than three kilowatt-hours – after all, Tesla has not been specific with decimal places.
These are still 2170 cells, not the 4680 cells with the new form factor presented at Battery Day. In the summer, Panasonic had announced further optimisations for the 2170 cells beyond the current improvement. At the end of July, the company announced that it intends to increase energy density by 20 per cent within five years and to bring a cobalt-free version onto the market “in two to three years”. Expect further battery updates for the Model 3 and Model Y over time.
In the past, various media revelations showed that the revised Model 3 with the new cells could also have a higher charging capacity. That being said, this information is not available from the vehicle registration document. We will have to wait until Tesla delivers the first vehicles with the new battery in a few weeks.