Tesla and Panasonic to set up auto battery plant in U.S.
Tesla and Panasonic are in talks to build a mega American factory for the production of lithium-ion batteries for electric cars and plug-in hybrid models. The plant should be operational from 2017 with a total investment expected to reach around 1 billion dollars.
The objective is to develop lower cost batteries also to make it more accessible to consumers buying a zero emissions or CO2 limited car.
The plant will produce small, lightweight batteries for Tesla and may also supply Toyota Motor as well as other automakers.
Tesla, that is partly owned by Toyota and Panasonic, expects to boost 2014 with 55% of sales on the year to 35,000 vehicles, helped by the mainstay Model S.
The company plans to launch a sport utility vehicle this year and is developing another electric vehicle.