Tesla has announced the Cell Team at Giga Texas has just produced its 20 millionth 4680 battery cell. The update from Tesla gives us a glimpse into how quickly 4680 cell production is ramping at the factory, as they were able to double the total number of cells produced over the last four months.
Not only is this a good sign for the Cell Team, it is also a good sign for Cybertruck production, as the electric truck is expected to launch soon and will also include 4680 cells.
Tesla first started 4680 cell production at a pilot facility in California next to the Fremont factory on Kato Road, before firing up their permanent production lines at Giga Texas in late 2022, about two years after it was first unveiled at the Battery Day event. As was to be expected, production did not ramp quickly as Tesla worked through various issues in the production process.
The first official update on Giga Texas 4680 cell production came in June 2023 when Tesla announced the 10 millionth cell had been produced. Now nearly four months later and that number has doubled to 20 million, according to a post from Tesla on X.
Just built our 20 millionth 4680 cell at Giga Texas! pic.twitter.com/6PCD6UC9PS
— Tesla (@Tesla) October 11, 2023
Doing some back of the napkin math, this means Tesla is currently producing around 588,000 4680 battery cells per week, enough to produce about 700 Model Y Long Range cars. But Tesla won’t be using these cells only for the Model Y, as the Cybertruck is also expected to utilize these cells. If we assume the Cybertruck will have a 130kWh battery pack, that equates to around 1,200 cells, and if we also assume all 4680 cell production is reserved for the Cybertruck, that gives Tesla the capacity to build 490 Cybertrucks per week, or around 2,000 per month.
Given that production of the Cybertruck is an entirely new process, Tesla won’t be producing anywhere near that amount near the start, but it gives a good indication that they will have more than enough cells to support production during the ramp.
Not only has Tesla increased their 4680 production at Giga Texas, they have also been able to improve the battery’s performance. During the Q2 earnings call earlier this year, we learned that the Cybertruck will get a new version of the 4680 battery that has a 10% higher energy density. Tesla did not get into the details on how they were able to increase the energy density, except to say it was achieved through process and mechanical design optimization.