Tesla has moved forward with its expansion of the Kato Road facility, where the 4680 battery cell is developed.
Filings seen by Teslarati show the automaker has continued with its expansion of the Materials Lab, where research and development of the 4680 cell and other battery projects take place.
Tesla filed for revisions to the expansion project in late April, but the Materials Lab has been undergoing modifications since 2021.
Tesla filed its initial permit for the expansion of the Materials Lab at 47400 Kato Road in Fremont in July 2021. It has continued to fill out over the past year and a half, with the most recent filings coming in early and late April of this year.
With the 4680 project continuing to expand in terms of production, Tesla is ramping up manufacturing of the cell to accommodate its appearance in vehicles, including the Model Y that is built at Gigafactory Texas.
Tesla first unveiled the 4680 cell in 2020 at the company’s Battery Day event. The automaker detailed how a new cell design would not only increase battery longevity, but also power and vehicle range, which has not yet been applied to cars with a 4680 pack.
Tesla Model Y vehicles fitted with the 4680 cell have actually shown to have less range than other vehicles, but there are be several reasons for this, and Tesla has gone out of their way to explain it.
Tesla said in a rebuttal to criticism of the range ratings of the 4680 pack:
“Introducing the new cells meant introducing a new variant of the Model Y. We’ve designed Model Y AWD to have an attractive combination of range, performance and price that will be the best fit for many customers and will make Model Y accessible to more customers, furthering our mission. Those interested in an even more capable Model Y should explore Model Y Long Range and Performance. We’ve chosen to put a lower-energy battery pack in Model Y AWD, resulting in lower range, acceleration, and price point.”
We have continued to track developments at both Kato Road and the Fremont Factory as Tesla has hinted in the past it could expand the production facility to make way for higher manufacturing rates.
Tesla 4680 production hits milestone of 868k cells in seven days
Tesla has a lofty goal of producing 1.8 million cars this year, and with recently expanded efforts at both Giga Texas and Giga Berlin, the automaker seems on track to reach this. If it does expand the Fremont Factory as well, growth to the 4680 cell project only seems logical.
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