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Panasonic Partners with Tesla For Battery Development Project

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On: Fri, Nov 5, 2010 at 10:26AM | By: Sherry Christiansen

Panasonic Partners with Tesla For Battery Development Project

Tesla Motors is preparing to partner with the Japanese technology giant Panasonic. Automotive News stated yesterday that Panasonic, which is already working with Tesla to provide lithium-ion cells for the Model S, is planning to invest in the California automaker. Citing the Nikkei business daily, Reuters reported that Panasonic "aims to work with Tesla to develop battery systems for next-generation EVs."

But there’s a third cog in the wheel of this picture: Toyota Motor Co. has also been working on development of an electric-powered vehicle with Panasonic . . . and Tesla!

Panasonic and Toyota initially formed a partnership in December 1996 with the Panasonic EV Energy joint venture which played a role in the introduction of the Prius.

Panasonic's stake in Tesla will be smaller than the $50 million that Toyota invested in the company in May.

Panasonic Corporation is a worldwide leader in the development of electronic products for a wide range of consumer, business, and industrial products. Based in Osaka, Japan, the company recorded consolidated net sales of 7.42 trillion yen (US$79.4 billion) for the year ended March 31, 2010.

Tesla, a Palo Alto, California-based automaker produces only electric vehicles, with a goal to design a full range of electric cars from premium sports cars, to mass market electric vehicles. Tesla is currently the only automaker in the U.S. that builds and sells highway-capable EVs in serial production, and designs and manufactures EVs and EV powertrain components.

Panasonic Corp. reported late Wednesday that it invested $30 million in the U.S. electric car manufacturer Tesla Motors Inc. in order to collaborate in a project to develop green technology for powertrains.

Panasonic, Toyota, and Daimler AG all three now have a stake in Tesla’s start-up electric vehicle company owned by Elon Musk. Panasonic now owns a 2% stake in the California EV automaker.

Tesla already utilizes Panasonic battery cells in its battery packs and is planning to redesign, market, and sell the next generation of power packs in collaboration with Panasonic.

Toyota Motor Co. has already invested $50 million in Tesla and plans to pay another $60 million in order to partner with Tesla in designing the RAV4 all electric model.

Panasonic has a joint venture with Toyota called Primearth EV Energy Co. to make lithium Ion batteries. The company has set a goal to position itself as a top producer of batteries for the next generation electric, and hybrid powertrain vehicles.

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alewis | 12:53PM (Mon, Nov 8, 2010)

Electric cars are coming along way with design! Can't wait to see what the future holds!


RoadKill | 8:54AM (Tue, Nov 9, 2010)

Jesus! who haven't they partnered with? another impractical EV when there is better alternatives out there....GO HYDROGEN!!!

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