Tesla and LG Chem Tighten Ties with New Battery Supply Deal

Tesla and LG Chem have been getting pretty chummy lately, so much so that talks of a new deal for LG Chem to supply a nickel-based battery to the EV giant is in the works. 

This first ten years of EV production, Tesla worked exclusively with Panasonic as its battery cell supplier. Once production at Gigafactory Shanghai was up and running, Tesla begin branching off from Panasonic and using cells from different manufacturers. For the production of the made-in-China Model 3, LG Chem and CATL joined the team. 

Tesla is currently working on its own in-house battery cell called the 4680. In October, Panasonic revealed that it is teaming up with Tesla to build a new prototype production line at Gigafactory Nevada to produce the new cells. However, the California-based company has made it clear that they will continue to secure as much battery supply from other manufacturers as possible.

Although it is clear that Panasonic is still a key player in Tesla’s game, rumors point to LG Chem becoming another key player in Korea for the automaker. Starting with Tesla looking to acquire stake in LG’S battery business this past September. Shortly after, news broker that LG Chem would produce a new battery cell with the exact same specs as Tesla’s 4680 cell.

More recently, the Korean battery signed a contract with Tesla to supply NCM batteries for the automakers upcoming Model Y Dual Motor vehicles for the Chinese market.

Now a new battery supply deal between the two companies could be on the table. According to The Korea Times, LG is going to supply a new NCMA battery cell to Tesla: “LG’s new battery business unit is set to become the first company to produce batteries with nickel, cobalt, manganese, and aluminum (NCMA) anode materials for EVs next year. LG Energy Solution is set to provide the NCMA batteries to Tesla, according to industry sources.”

LG Chem had little to say regarding the matter, simply stating: “We cannot confirm this as we cannot specify the names of our clients.”

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