First Tesla Model Y with blade battery to offer shorter range as per a pack capacity leak
Tesla keeps experimenting with the Model Y that is on the way to becoming the world's most popular vehicle, replacing Toyota Corolla for the title next year. It is painting the Model Y in new multi-layer colors, installing new airbag sets, and intends to produce the upcoming batches with at least three different battery technologies. After starting to put 4680 batteries in the US performance versions of the Model Y, Tesla may also be testing new battery technologies for the standard ones, like CATL's M3P phosphate cells, or BYD's safe blade batteries.
The partnership with BYD, in particular, may start giving fruit as soon as this month when Tesla Model Y units assembled in the Berlin Gigafactory are expected to start coming with integrated blade batteries. BYD says that it is one of the few battery makers that is focused on safety and as a result its cell-to-pack blade batteries offer the highest volumetric density, all the while they remain cool under torture tests like nail penetration or extreme heat.
Courtesy of a new Tesla Model Y version approval by the Netherlands Vehicle Authority (RDW), we now know the exact capacity of the blade battery that will go in the bestselling electric SUV. Granted last month, RDW's approval for a Model Y 7CR with the internal codename Type 005 includes the new battery size. While CATL will be shipping its new M3P lithium-phosphate battery to Tesla for a 72 kWh Model Y pack in Q4 and the current battery that Tesla uses in the Model Y has 75 kWh capacity, the blade battery that BYD has started delivering to Giga Berlin is of the more modest 55 kWh capacity.
That's not even reaching the numbers of a base RWD Model Y with 60 kWh battery that was registered for approval in Europe last year, whose CATL-made pack is said to be good for 455 km of range on a charge. The 55 kWh blade battery that BYD is delivering to the Berlin Gigafactory for immediate use in the Model Y vehicles produced there, is rated for 440 km on a charge.
On the other hand, the RDW lists the Type 005 Model Y weight to be significantly lighter than that of the previously approved base RWD Model Y with CATL's 60 kWh battery, which explains why the range difference is so small. The only thing left to learn now is the price of the Model Y with the safer, lighter blade battery as, given the capacity ordered, it may surprise on the pleasant side.