In China, Tesla is reportedly in discussions with battery giant CATL to increase the range of the Model 3 Propulsion. The program: a 10% increase in autonomy; unless this new battery is intended for the Model Y Propulsion…
Tesla has a history of evolving the range of its vehicles, especially with its entry-level Model 3. If between 2019 and 2020, the cheapest Model 3 (Standard Range Plus) was equipped with a WLTP range of 409 km, this then increased to 448 km in 2021 and then 510 km currently on the Propulsion with 18-inch Aero wheels. This increase in range was made possible by larger capacity batteries: 50 kWh, then 55 kWh, and finally 60 kWh. It seems that Tesla is preparing a new increase in autonomy for the coming months.
A NEW BATTERY FOR 2023?
According to the Chinese media Sina, the Shanghai Tesla factory is preparing to launch a new Model 3 Propulsion. More precisely, the American manufacturer would be preparing the integration of a new battery from CATL with LMFP (Lithium-Manganese-Iron-Phosphate) M3P technology, replacing the current LFP (Lithium-Iron-Phosphate). This new battery will increase the theoretical range of the Model 3 Propulsion by 10%, or 560 km on the European WLTP cycle.
In terms of timing, when the start of production of M3P batteries was announced last July, the Chinese giant CATL had planned mass deliveries for 2023. So if this Model 3 Propulsion does see the light of day, it won’t be for a long time.
A BATTERY RATHER INTENDED FOR THE MODEL Y!
This piece of information is to be taken with caution since the Chinese website Wall Street News contacted Tesla China which refuted this rumour. This new battery may be intended for the Model Y Propulsion produced in China (and reserved only for the Asian market for the moment) to increase its autonomy. Currently given 455 km of WLTP range, the hypothetical Model Y Propulsion equipped with this new battery could then exceed 500 km of theoretical range.
Moreover, another rumour announces the imminent arrival of this entry-level Model Y in Europe, thanks to LFP batteries from BYD that would have been received by Tesla’s Berlin factory. Is there any relation between this different information? Which model will have the lion’s share of the new batteries? All that remains is to wait for the eventual official announcement of these models by the American firm.
Is ELON MUSK insisting on a long-range?
For the record, Elon Musk refused to market a Model Y with 400 km of autonomy in 2020. But with the evolution of batteries and the increase in range, we can expect to see this Model Y Propulsion appearing all over the world in the coming months, at a price several thousand euros lower than the Long Range version. It is already available in the United States, but only for the company’s employees.
If Elon Musk wants his electric cars to have a good range, the American billionaire relativizes the importance of the latter, since he thinks that nobody needs a car with a range of 1,000 km. And he’s not necessarily wrong.