For a long time now, Tesla has been leading the market when it comes to long-range electric vehicles.
The automaker aimed to change the perception of electric cars by only making the best cars possible and that means not having a range of less than 200 miles on a single charge.
In order to do that, Tesla is using a lot more battery capacity per car than its competitors and over the last few years, it became the largest consumer of Li-ion batteries in the world.
According to research firm Adamas Intelligence’s latest “EV Battery Capacity Monthly” report, Tesla Model 3 alone was responsible for 16% of the world’s entire electric battery capacity deployed in May.
That’s 4 times the amount of batteries as the second most battery-consuming product, according to Adamas Intelligence:
“In May 2019, the Tesla Model 3 alone was responsible for 16% of all passenger EV battery capacity deployed globally versus 4% for the second-ranked BYD Yuan and 3% for the fifth-ranked Nissan Leaf, according to Adamas Intelligence’s latest “EV Battery Capacity Monthly” report.”
When adding Model X and Model S into the mix, Tesla was responsible for 22% of all passenger EV battery capacity deployed globally in May 2019. That’s an increase versus just 18% during the same period a year ago.
The firm highlights Tesla’s increasing battery consumption:
“In the first five months of 2018, there was just a single month in which Tesla deployed over 1 GWh of EV battery capacity, while over the first five months of this year there have been three, speaking to the automaker’s growing appetite for li-ion cells.”
In the first 5 months of 2019, they estimate that Tesla needed over 7 GWh of battery capacity and it will likely require over 20 GWh of battery capacity for its electric car production in 2019.
For its electric cars, Tesla exclusively gets its battery cells from Panasonic – most of which are produced at Tesla’s Gigafactory 1 in Nevada.
Panasonic invested in an annual production capacity of 35 GWh at the factory, but we learn earlier this year that it was limited to about 23 GWh due to production constraints that the company is trying to fix.
I am not sure how reliable this data is since we don’t know the mix of Model 3 (sizes of battery packs) that Tesla produces in Fremont.
However, over 20 GWh of battery capacity deployed in Tesla electric cars in 2019 sounds very likely.
Either way, there’s no doubt that Tesla Model 3, a single product, is responsible for an incredibly large part of the world’s entire battery capacity.
Tesla saw it coming and it has heavily invested in securing battery capacity, which is seemingly again becoming the main bottleneck for its growth.
The next step appears to be producing its own cells, which Tesla all but confirmed recently.
We expect an announcement by the end of the year and I expect that it will be the biggest and most important Tesla news of 2019. Move aside Tesla Model Y and pickup truck.