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Tesla Battery Packs Have More Life Than Expected

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Tesla’s battery packs are a lot more powerful than what was believed until now. Therefore, apprehensions that the electric car batteries will wear out are apparently unfounded. Electrek reported that a Tesla owner group that collected some data found that there are very few chances for the Model S battery pack to degrade to less than 90% over 200,000 miles or even further.

Battery packs more durable than expected

About 286 Model S owners around the world are being tracked by Tesla owners participating in a Dutch-Belgium Tesla forum. The group updates the information in an open Google Docs spreadsheet. After the initial 50,000 miles, most of the Model S battery packs maintain about 95% capacity, reveals the data.

What’s interesting is that the battery pack degradation takes place at a very slow pace after that. It’s so slow that another 150,000 miles is required for bringing an additional 5% degradation. The group has extensive data and several charts that include trend lines showing the aggregate data result. It also has outliers — cars with numbers far from the average performance.

The effect that the use of Supercharger stations has on battery pack degradation, if any, is also being tracked in the collected data.

One of the charts from the forum says, “When looking at the general trend, supercharging more frequently seems to be better for the battery than supercharging less frequently. One possible explanation is that, during supercharging the battery is subject to heat for a shorter time, thus reducing parasitic reactions.”

The EV firm has established a drive unit lifetime goal of at least 1 million miles, said Electrek. If the battery packs have the capacity of lasting that long, then we might have Teslas in the future that deliver more than a million miles. The data from the Dutch-Belgium forum suggests that this isn’t beyond the realm of possibility.

Tesla owes $1.7 billion to Panasonic

In other Tesla news, the company said in a regulatory filing that as of September 30, it had an obligation to pay about $1.7 billion to Japan’s Panasonic Corp for electric vehicle battery cells made at its Gigafactory in Nevada. As evident from filings in October, the $1.7 billion figure is unchanged, says Reuters.

In 2014, the Japanese company agreed to invest in machinery, equipment and other manufacturing tools at the Gigafactory. The EV firm expects to start making batteries at the plant by the end of the year. These batteries will first be used in Tesla’s energy products, and then in its cars.

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