Chinese Battery Production Could Leave Tesla in the Dust
Tesla’s massive “Gigafactory” in Nevada has been grabbing headlines since it was announced. Billed as the largest lithium-ion battery-cell factory in the world, it’s supposed to churn out batteries at an enormous rate to provide economies of scale for Tesla’s $35,000 Model 3 electric car. But Chinese companies could soon leave Tesla in the dust, according to Bloomberg. The news service claims Chinese factories are adding enough capacity to produce 120 gigawatt-hours of batteries a year by 2021.
Analysts say that’s enough to power the equivalent of 1.5 million Tesla Model S electric cars, or 13.7 million Toyota Prius Prime plug-in hybrids. In comparison, Tesla’s Gigafactory is expected to produce 35 gWh when it ramps up to full capacity in 2018, according to Bloomberg.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk has said Tesla will build multiple Gigafactories as it grows production of both cars and stationary energy-storage battery packs. Reports indicate Tesla could announce locations for up to four battery factories by the end of this year, and may build an assembly plant in China.
Roughly 55 percent of global lithium-ion battery-cell production is already based in China, compared to about 10 percent in the U.S., according to Bloomberg. The publication predicts China’s share of that market will grow to 65 percent by 2021….