Tesla has confirmed that its new tab-less 4680 battery cells are going to be produced by Panasonic which already has a dedicated facility at the Gigafactory in Nevada. This report comes via Nikkei Asia which states, "Panasonic will set up a prototype production line at existing facilities. The cost of the project is expected to run into the tens of millions of dollars."
Tesla has been working on its own battery cell chemistry for years, but it has also maintained deep ties with traditional battery cell makers as it is more focussed towards the module and the pack itself.
For years, Panasonic has been Tesla's go-to partner but in recent times it has also started working with LG Chem and CATL. These new tab-less batteries were unveiled in September at its "Battery Day" event.
For these batteries, the company said that it will produce them itself with production machinery designed in-house. However, Elon Musk has stated that it will continue to work with external parties and acquire as much battery supply it can so that it can fuel its ambitious growth.
Recently, there were reports which claimed that even LG Chem was manufacturing batteries similar to Tesla's tab-less batteries. It could be that Tesla is tapping into both Panasonic and LG Chem for the same while also doing its own thing as it scales its business to new markets. Recent reports suggest that Tesla is also planning to enter a major market like India which from a long-term point of view could be strategic for the company even if it doesn't have the scale in the short term.
Currently, the new 4680 batteries are only being manufactured in the Fremont facility though Panasonic has a huge facility inside the main Gigafactory in Nevada and Tesla could even scale this model to its new GigaFactory in Berlin and other locations.