LG Energy Solutions and Samsung SDI develop first Tesla 4680 battery cells

Tesla 4680 battery production line

As Tesla continues its path towards manufacturing vehicles with 4680 batteries, two of their current EV battery suppliers have taken the major step of developing samples of the new battery cells.

According to a high-ranking industry official familiar with the developments, LG Energy Solutions and Samsung SDI have both finished developing sample 4680 cells. The two companies are now performing tests on the batteries to ensure they meet Tesla’s high standards of quality, and have already shared initial results with Tesla.

“Samsung SDI and LG Energy Solution have developed samples of cylindrical 4680 cells and are currently conducting various tests at their facilities to verify their structural integrity. Also, they have provided specifications of their 4680 cells to their vendors,” the source told The Korea Herald.

If true, the creation of 4680 battery cells by two independent suppliers is a huge development for Tesla. The automaker is already developing the cells out of their Roadrunner facility just down the road from the Fremont factory, but CEO Elon Musk has said several times they will not be able to make enough cells to meet the expected demand.

The news also lines up with reports earlier this year that LG Energy Solutions was converting some of their existing factory space to build a pilot 4680 production line.

Panasonic is also working on developing 4680 batteries for Tesla. Last year Panasonic CFO Hirokazu Umeda revealed they have been doing so since it was first announced at Battery Day in September 2020.

The first cars expected to have the new cells are the Model Y and Cybertruck, which will be built at Giga Berlin and Giga Texas hopefully later this year. The 4680 batteries have a much larger form factor than the current cells resulting in more energy, range and power. At the same time, they are also much cheaper to develop.

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Founder and Editor-in-chief of Drive Tesla Canada | Darryn@DriveTeslaCanada.ca Have a Tesla tip? Email tips@driveteslacanada.ca, or DM us on Twitter @DriveTeslaca