Tesla's game-changing 4680 battery will be given 'top priority' by Panasonic
When Elon Musk took the stage during Tesla's socially-distanced Battery Day event in 2020, he announced to a great fanfare that his electric cars will soon be powered by a new and exciting cylindrical battery unit. Dubbed the 4680 battery on account of its dimensions, it would not only be more economical to produce than Tesla's currently used batteries, but also pack higher energy density and allow farther range reach in the same footprint. The first Teslas with the 4680 battery packs are promised to appear this current quarter, and Tesla's long-running battery partnership with Panasonic will seemingly deliver again, too.
Panasonic just announced that it will be giving priority to Tesla as a main 4680 battery client after the trial production in Q1 of its fiscal year that begins in April. Tesla amounts to 60% of Panasonic's energy business and its Chief Financial Officer Hirokazu Umeda's comment that "Tesla has put in an extremely strong request for the 4680, so when we are actually able to deliver the 4680, we plan to put top priority on Tesla" comes as no surprise. While Panasonic is still choosing a place for the trial and the mass 4680 production, what seemed like a pie-in-the-sky promise when Tesla announced it in 2020, now only comes down to yield and deliveries, problems that Elon Musk has been able to solve when needed.