Panasonic May Be Planning a Huge New US Battery Factory, Report Says – Roadshow

Panasonic May Be Planning a Huge New US Battery Factory, Report Says – Roadshow

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Panasonic has long been a cell supplier to Tesla, and now it’s looking like that partnership is about to get bigger.

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Panasonic plans to begin production of Tesla’s new-design 4680 battery cell in 2024. When Roadshow first reported on the story, we knew that the company intended to add two production lines to its Wakayama factory in Japan. It turns out there’s more to that story because according to a report published on Friday by Reuters, Panasonic is planning a whole new factory in the US.

Panasonic, which has been Tesla’s battery bestie for years now, is looking to expand production in a big way, and it looks like that will mean building a gigantic new factory somewhere in the US. Reuters’ source speculates this could be Oklahoma or Kansas, near the Texas border which would place it closer to Tesla’s new Austin headquarters.

Panasonic plans to start mass-producing 4680 batteries in Japan in 2024, but it’s unclear when this US factory could come online. If Tesla gets involved with the construction, it could be sooner rather than later. If not — and this seems more likely — it could be a few years at least.

Panasonic won’t be the only firm in the 4680 business either. LG Energy Solutions, and possibly Samsung, will both produce the cells as well, which means once the production rollout starts, Tesla’s production vehicles should quickly move to the new cell, supply permitting.

Roadshow reached out to Panasonic for comment but didn’t immediately hear back. Tesla does not operate a public relations department to field requests for comment.

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