All-electric carmaker Tesla Motors has just signed a new deal with Panasonic for the supply of almost 2 billion battery cells over the next 4 years. This is a huge increase on the previous deal signed in 2011, which was for enough battery cells to build around 80,000 electric cars over 4 years.
Forbes has pointed out that the new deal involving 2 billion battery cells over 4 years is enough for nearly 300,000 Tesla vehicles, as the biggest Tesla battery pack uses about 7000 cells. As sales are expected to grow substantially, especially with the upcoming Tesla Model X release, it’s reasonable to expect that Tesla is aiming to ramp up production and sales to over 100,000 cars per year by the fourth year of the new battery deal with Panasonic. It’s already looking like Tesla will sell over 20,000 cars this year, so that’s 5 times the amount annually by 2017.
Although demand and sales for that many cars is by no means assured, it has to be said that Tesla has met its own ambitious expectations for sales so far, against the expectations of many electric car naysayers. Within the timeframe of the 4-year battery deal, or “by 2017 at the latest”, Tesla is also planning to release a more affordable mass market electric car priced below US$40,000.
With 2 established models by that stage, and one new mass market car hitting the road, Tesla could well be producing 100,000 or more electric cars per year.