Feb 28, 2022 - 12:54 pm

Panasonic confirms 4680 battery cell production

Panasonic has now officially announced that it will set up a production facility for the new 4680 cells at its plant in Wakayama Prefecture, Japan. These are to be suitable for use in electric cars. The company has thus confirmed a corresponding rumour.

At the end of January, it was reported that Panasonic would start series production of the new 4680 cells for Tesla “in the course of 2023”. Already at that time, an expansion of the plant in Wakayama was mentioned.

As Panasonic now confirms, two additional production lines will be built at the plant. Panasonic is holding out the prospect of the start of series production of the 4680 cells for the fiscal year ending in March 2024. This fiscal year begins on April 1, 2023, which means that the production start date cited by Nikkei could be held during 2023, but the first quarter of the calendar year 2024 would also still be conceivable according to Panasonic’s official schedule.

Aside from the two production lines, the company does not provide more specific details about the expansion. It only says that the plant, which opened in 1991, is about 100,000 square meters in size. It is unclear whether the plant area will be expanded or whether a new building will even be constructed for the production lines.

In autumn 2021, Panasonic presented a prototype of its 4680 cell for Tesla and announced its intention to start test production in Japan in March 2022. Performance data on the cell was not mentioned then or in the current announcement on the plant expansion.

In September 2020, Tesla unveiled the significantly larger and more powerful battery cell called 4680. The designation traditionally refers to the dimensions at Tesla: The diameter of the round cell is 46 millimetres, and the cell is 80 millimetres long. The new cells are designed not only to improve the range and performance of electric cars but also to be cheaper per kilowatt-hour and significantly reduce the investment costs in their production. The 4680 cell is five times larger than the NCA battery cell currently used by Tesla.

Tesla is currently building its own 4680 cells at a facility in Fremont. According to current reports, the first Tesla model with 4680 cells is about to be released for sale. The Model Y with the new battery will be built at Giga Texas.

panasonic.com (PDF)


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Found on electrive.com
28.02.2022 12:01