Tesla Nears LFP Battery Deal with China’s BYD, Claims Report

Photo: @JayinShanghai

Following Tesla’s announcement of its plans to shift standard variants of Model 3 and Y units to lithium iron phosphate (LFP) batteries globally, the company has apparently made a huge battery order from one Chinese company with a California factory.

Tesla reportedly ordered 10 GWh of LFP electric vehicle (EV) batteries from BYD, according to a source who remains anonymous, and as reported by cls.cn (via CNEVPost).

While BYD is based in China, the company is backed by Warren Buffett and also happens to have an LFP EV battery production facility in Lancaster, California, according to the report. Still, BYD’s website self-proclaims this facility as an “electric bus and truck production facility,” contradicting the report.

While Tesla’s Gigafactory Shanghai-produced Model 3 and Y units are currently using LFP batteries from CATL, though the source suggested that BYD may have an easier time securing a contract with Tesla, due to its U.S. plant.

BYD’s Lancaster plant only features a production capacity of around 1 GWh, though the source also said that it could be upgraded to supply the needs of Tesla’s Fremont factory, at least.

In August, another rumor surfaced that Tesla may be looking to use BYD’s blade battery in 2022 models, though the validity of that information is still unclear.