By on October 13, 2014

Super GT Panasonic Toyota Prius

Just how much will Panasonic throw down on the table when it comes time to invest in Tesla’s new Gigafactory near Reno, Nev.? According to CEO Kazuhiro Tsuga, “tens of billions” of yen.

Reuters reports Tsuga didn’t think the current exchange rate — which knocks his investment quote down to tens, if not hundreds, of millions of dollars — was “bad,” so long as the exchange remained stable.

As reported earlier this year, Panasonic wants the Gigafactory all to itself, investing in all levels of production at the upcoming plant. The battery producer also agreed to manufacture lithium ion cells for Tesla’s and other manufacturers’ battery packs as part of the overall investment deal.

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23 Comments on “Panasonic Investing “Tens Of Billions” Of Yen In Tesla Gigafactory...”

  • avatar

    Wonder how much they spend on R&D every year? Dont know why all the battery OEMs dont just come together and create the next leap in battery tech. We need a leap not a step.

    • 0 avatar

      Because they are for-profit businesses, not benevolent charities.

    • 0 avatar
      Da Coyote

      Indeed. I await the fun show when someone comes up with a battery schema which overcomes the many problems with the battery technology produced by the Tesla factory.

      And believe me, that quantum jump will come, and it’ll come most probably before that factory has come to a full year of production.

      Wanna bet?

      • 0 avatar

        Already have, Ryden dual carbon batteries.

        • 0 avatar

          I’ll believe in that battery (Ryden dual-carbon) when it shows up in something.

          Military applications are demanding and cost-insensitive, so it should be there first.

          Smartphones, with a big appetite for current and not much physical space in which to store it and a high price usually concealed from the consumer by an ultimately larcenous contract would be another logical place to find these batteries.

          So far, the Ryden is a no-show in all these applications.

          • 0 avatar

            Give it some time :) It was only announced to the public a few months ago! Supposedly it is going to be used in a formula E car, but I don’t have the knowledge to verify if/how that’s going.

      • 0 avatar
        SCE to AUX

        If this magical jump in technology was just over the horizon, Panasonic would know about it and avoid the Gigafactory.

    • 0 avatar

      There are no leaps in battery development, just incremental changes. Chemical storage has its fundamental limitations. The future is not BEVs, but H2 FCs.

      • 0 avatar

        >> The future is not BEVs, but H2 FCs.

        Let’s see how long they allow those 10,000 PSI tanks to be parked in building basement garages or driven through long underground highway tunnels. Would you fill a vehicle with a 10,000 psi tank with your child seated in the car over the tanks. Yeah, I know, nothing will ever go wrong with those tanks.

      • 0 avatar

        @There are no leaps in battery development, just incremental changes. Chemical storage has its fundamental limitations. The future is not BEVs, but H2 FCs.

        There hasn’t been a leap in IC production since the 1960s. Incremental changes have gone a long way. Expect incremental improvements in batteries as long as ridiculous amounts of money are spent on smartphones and the like (there is simply no way to create an R&D program for ecar batteries that will compare to simply buying a several hundred dollar device limited by batteries every few years).

        #insert basic rant on how hydrogen for fuel is a failed idea in roughly every way as well.

        ##snarkily suggest why stop at H2? Why not use the real wunderfuel, H1*?

        * No really. Monotomic hydrogen has roughly the storage density of nuclear power, at least as well as anybody who has managed to isolate it long enough to measure.

    • 0 avatar

      The next leap is pretty much already in research and development or testing for both fuel cell stacks and batteries, same with “fusion” reactors…The best part is, they are cost competitive with Gas and Coal respectively. I’m sure this factory will need to convert within a few years from opening to keep up.

      Ryden Dual Carbon Batteries, Graphene laced with coal carbon nano dot fuel cell stacks to replace the platinum, and University of Washington’s Dynomak reactor. There are also competitors out there too if any of these don’t pan out.

      The next 10-20 years is going to be exciting and revolutionary as we finally move beyond the 20th century into a new age of clean affordable energy.

  • avatar
    Master Baiter

    Didn’t we already know this?

  • avatar

    That’s nothing compared to the number of Indonesian Rupiah’s they are going to invest.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    I don’t believe this factory will produce anything but 18650s for Tesla; no other EV maker is using them.

    Panasonic and Tesla would have to jointly agree to produce a competitor’s form factor other than the 18650 in the Gigafactory, and I’m not seeing that – ever.

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