Driven

Lion cars per an­num in 2030.

- Business · Ecology · Cars · Consumer Goods · United States of America · Elon Musk · Tesla Motors · Nikola Tesla · Tesla Model S · Porsche Automobil Holding SE · Porsche Taycan · BMW · Munro & Associates (United States)

WAIT, ONE MORE THING...

0-100 km/h < 2 sec, quar­ter mile < 9 sec, yours for $139,990. in the United States. And as can be ex­pected from Elon Musk and his team, Tesla has fig­ured out a new method of ex­tract­ing lithium from clay us­ing salt and wa­ter. This pro­pri­etary process makes a com­pelling case for the sus­tain­able min­ing of lithium on a 4,000 hectare par­cel of land that Tesla has ac­quired in close prox­im­ity to its Gi­gafac­tory Ne­vada. Cost re­duc­tions based on the new method of ex­trac­tion and lo­ca­tion close to man­u­fac­tur­ing makes this an­other coup for Tesla in its drive to­wards a sus­tain­able fu­ture for hu­mankind.

Re­cy­cling Cheaper than Min­ing – % re­duc­tion in $/ KWh cost to be de­ter­mined

While Tesla re­mains de­pen­dent on third parties for re­cy­cling bat­tery ma­te­ri­als, Musk and Baglino went to great lengths to point out that the re­cy­cling of bat­ter­ies is an or­der of mag­ni­tude more ef­fi­cient and cost ef­fec­tive for re­triev­ing bat­tery cell ma­te­ri­als than even the most ef­fi­cient min­ing. Typ­i­cal nickel ore yields only 1.2% bat­tery grade nickel, com­pared to 20% for re­cy­cled bat­ter­ies. Sim­i­larly, re­cy­cling yields 20 times more cobalt, and four times more lithium than min­ing. With such vast cost sav­ings po­ten­tial in re­cy­cling, Tesla is start­ing its own re­cy­cling pilot project at Gi­gafac­tory Ne­vada this quar­ter.

Amidst the an­nounce­ments of revo­lu­tion­ary break­throughs, Tesla also un­veiled its Model S Plaid, the quick­est ac­cel­er­at­ing pro­duc­tion car ever. Fit­ted with Tesla’s new 4680 bat­tery cells feed­ing a tri­mo­tor all-wheel drive pow­er­train, this elec­tric hy­per sedan boasts an elec­tric range of over 840 km, and

is claimed to ac­cel­er­ate from 0-100 km/h in un­der two sec­onds while scorch­ing the quar­ter mile in un­der nine sec­onds. On top of that, the Model S Plaid re­cently set the fastest lap time ever for a pro­duc­tion sedan on the La­guna Seca Race­way. This fol­lows a sim­i­lar un­of­fi­cial record lap time on the Nür­bur­gring in 2019. Orig­i­nally an­nounced for 2020, the new Tesla Model S Plaid will be avail­able in late 2021, and can be or­dered on the Tesla web­site for $139,990 (ap­prox­i­mately R2,374,986) – a very rea­son­able price when com­pared to the much more ex­pen­sive Porsche Tay­can and the Lu­cid Air, not to men­tion the lux­ury in­ter­nal com­bus­tion en­gine of­fer­ings from MercedesBe­nz and BMW in the same price bracket.

LAST WORD

Tesla’s revo­lu­tion­ary 4680 bat­tery cell, com­bined with break­throughs in fac­tory de­sign, an­ode and cath­ode ma­te­ri­als, as well as its epochal bat­tery/ ve­hi­cle in­te­gra­tion prom­ises a to­tal re­duc­tion of 55% in $/KWh cost at the pack level, in­creas­ing range by 54%, and re­duc­ing capex in­vest­ment per GWh with 69%. The im­pli­ca­tions of such cost sav­ings, not to men­tion the in­crease in range, are le­gion. As the tear­down ex­pert Sandy Munro from Munro & As­so­ci­ates quipped, this should have the CEOs of ev­ery OEM wet­ting their shorts. And if they are not quak­ing in their boots, hope­fully this will mo­ti­vate them to strap on their boots to at­tempt a sim­i­lar march to­wards revo­lu­tion­ary break­throughs, cost sav­ings, and a sus­tain­able fu­ture for all. Elon Musk’s as­pi­ra­tions tend to be of the giga va­ri­ety, but given his vast ac­com­plish­ments across nu­mer­ous in­dus­tries, only a fool would bet against him.

 ??  ??
 ??  ??

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa