Panasonic Corp., a major partner in Tesla Inc.’s batterymaking “gigafactory” near Reno, Nev., says it has no plans do the same in China to support the electric car company’s new assembly plant in Shanghai.
President Kazuhiro Tsuga tells reporters Tesla has the option of supplying its Chinese plants with batteries from local producers or source Panasonic batteries from Nevada.
Panasonic agreed to become a major partner in Tesla’s U.S. battery factory. The facility eventually is intended to expand to a $5 billion complex with the capacity to make enough batteries per year to power 500,000 EVs.
Panasonic vowed to hike its initial $250 million in the gigafactory project to $1.5 billion by 2020. But it may never hit that target. Relations between the two companies have become strained.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk complained in April that Panasonic production inefficiencies hampered the launch of the carmaker’s critically important Model 3 sedan. At the time, reports said Panasonic had refused to invest further in the project until Tesla’s vehicle output grew.
Earlier this month, Tesla announced it had signed a deal to supply its Shanghai assembly plant with batteries from China’s CATL (Contemporary Amperex Technology Co.).
Although the RAV4 has plenty of heritage in the small crossover segment, competition has gotten a whole lot tougher, so Toyota has made significant changes to the fourth-generation model.
Although the term “continuous improvement” is generally associated with another company, Honda is certainly pursuing that approach, as is evidenced by the Accord, which is now in its ninth generation.
Ram Truck chief exterior designer Joe Dehner talks about how they’ve developed the all-new pickup. “We’ve been building trucks for over 100 years,” he says. “Best I could come up with is that this is our 15th-generation truck.”