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Tesla's new battery cell is in development at Panasonic

Tesla's longtime supplier will reportedly take the lead on the so-called Biscuit Tin cell, which could help make electric cars much cheaper.

The Biscuit Tin promises a lot.

Tesla

Tesla's longtime partner and supplier Panasonic will develop its new battery cell, the so-called Biscuit Tin. Panasonic announced the news Thursday in a financial briefing, Reuters reports, in which the Japanese company stressed its "considerable know-how" in battery tech.

Hirokazu Umeda, Panasonic's chief financial officer, said work on the new battery cell began immediately after Tesla's Battery Day event. Soon, a prototype production line will come to life for the cell. Panasonic did not immediately return Roadshow's request for comment. Tesla does not operate a public relations department to field requests for comment.

The cylindrical cell is an important component that the California-based automaker said will help reduce manufacturing costs for its electric cars while boosting driving range.

Key figures include a 16% increase in range with five times the amount of energy compared to a battery cell today. All the while, the cost to manufacture the cell could drop by 14%. Even better, the design reduces its impact on natural resources with less water used during the process. One final figure to keep in mind? Tesla believes all of the changes with the new cell will drive down the cost per kilowatt hour of its cells by 56%. If Tesla wants to build a $25,000 electric car, this battery will be a key part of that process.

The changes come as Panasonic's battery joint venture with Tesla started reporting profits this year as the two work to ramp up output at the Nevada-based Gigafactory. The plant's total capacity is set to increase by 10% in 2022.

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