Manganese producers set to strike gold after Tesla unveils shift to new generation of batteries

Manganese producers are set to strike the proverbial pot of gold after the world's biggest electric car maker, Tesla Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) (FRA:TL0) announced a major shift in its battery strategy – the move to manufacture its own batteries incorporating manganese and nickel.

Tesla's aim to drive down the cost of its electric cars will see the company producing its own new generation of batteries that will be more powerful, longer-lasting and half as expensive than the companys current cells.

More power and greater range

Teslas new larger cylindrical cells will provide five times more energy, six times more power and far greater driving range, according to Tesla chief executive officer Elon Musk.

Full production is about three years away, Musk said at Teslas Battery Day on Wednesday.

Manufacture own batteries

We intend to increase, not reduce battery cell purchases from Panasonic, LG & CATL (possibly other partners too). However, even with our cell suppliers going at maximum speed, we still foresee significant shortages in 2022 & beyond unless we also take action ourselves.

— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) September 21, 2020

Tesla aims to manufacture its own battery cells at several highly automated factories around the world and source its own raw materials, including manganese.

Musk disclosed several technological advances that it plans to implement to substantially lower the cost of producing lithium-ion batteries and electric vehicles.

This plan includes to start manufacturing at a very large scale, an innovative type of lithium-ion battery with a cathode that contains around 33% manganese, made directly from manganese metal.

Affordable electric car

The switch is aimed at delivery an 'affordable' electric car by slashing battery costs in half with new technology and processes.

Building an affordable electric car “has always been our dream from the beginning of the company”, Musk told an online audience of more than 270,000.

In January, Musk had said that in order to ramp-up production of the Tesla Model Y vehicle, introduce the new Cybertruck and launch its semi-electric truck, a lot more batteries would be needed.

“The thing were going to be really focused on is increasing battery production capacity because thats very fundamental – because if you dont improve battery production capacity, then you end up just shifting unit volume from one product to another and you havent actually produced more electric vehicles,” Musk said.

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