Tesla And Panasonic Freeze Plans To Extend Gigafactory 1 In Nevada

Tesla and Panasonic are reportedly freezing their plans to expand the capacity of Gigafactory 1 in Nevada, according to Nikkei Asian Review.

It is reported that the companies intended on raising capacity at the world’s largest electric vehicle battery plant by up to 50 per cent in 2020, but current sales of electric vehicles are below expectations and it is thought that investing in a Gigafactory expansion will prove to be too much of a risk.

Last August, Tesla CEO Elon Musk said that the electric car manufacturer could build up to 1 million vehicles in 2020. He soon, however, amended that statement, something that falls in line with the revised Gigafactory plans.

Also Read: Tesla Secures 210-Acre Site For Its Chinese Gigafactory

Lower-than-expected EV sales may also impact Tesla’s production goals at its forthcoming factory in Shanghai, China. According to the Nikkei Asian Review, Panasonic will suspend its planned investment in the Shanghai Gigafactory, and instead only provide technical support and a small number of batteries built at Nevada’s Gigafactory 1.

Tesla and Panasonic have invested $4.5 billion into the Nevada plant since construction of the facility first commenced. The site has been making batteries for the entry-level Model 3 since January 2017, with Panasonic handling the manufacturing of the cells and Tesla combining them into battery packs and placing them in the vehicles it builds in California. The site has a production capacity of 35 gigawatt-hours a year, but this was to be increased to 54 gigawatt-hours a year by 2020 – something that, obviously, won’t happen.

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  • Super Rob

    Not surprising. We are still have some technological battery hurdles to clear before widespread adoption.

    • Jason Clairmonte

      Nonsense. EVs are already all most people need on a daily basis. And by most, I mean 95% of private owners.

      • Super Rob

        LOL. Only if they never plan on leaving their town.

  • man

    Just as well, better not to over extend.

    I do think Tesla’s other market is solar+power wall in homes.

  • lagann

    Still think electric isn’t the way of the future unless batteries can be recycled in its entirety to make new batteries and also they need a breakthrough in technology to make them last way longer and be safe.

    Nobody ever talks about how much pollution dead batteries cause to the environment…

    • Jerry Hightower

      Nor are they talking about the child labor being used in the Congo to mine the cobalt used in the batteries.

      • lagann

        They talk about it so little I didn’t even know. Thanks for the info.

    • Yavor

      Yeah, and people forget how much pollution fossil fuel cars cause not only during production but especially during use.

  • TheBelltower

    This probably has less to do with demand, and more to do with Tesla moving away from Panasonic. Tesla recently bought an “ultracapacitor” company, Maxwell, for over $200M. So depending on how this technology develops, Panasonic may be out of the picture. And the level of investment in conventional lithium batteries may not be necessary.

  • Jason Clairmonte

    I am so sick of the crap i hear about batteries being polluting and child labour in the Congo. The IMMENSE amounts of carbon being put into the environment, the negative effects on respiratory systems, the climate change issues, the inefficiency in the ICE system, the immense and expensive infrastructure required to supply petrol and diesel…. And you’re telling me that EVs wont work until we can recycle a battery? Bull-crap! Utter nonsense. EVs are already far superior an option. It is price that needs to drop and it will with mass-production and time. The reason for the slower adoption is a lack of knowledge, fear, ignorance and a concerted attempt by legacy manufacturers to slow the sea change to EV usage. And it shall not work in the long run.

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