Electric carmaker Tesla could implicate South Korean battery producer Samsung SDI as an additional supplier – as the Californian producer is tackling the problems of expansion and introduction of additional models.
Both companies confirmed they are indeed in talks about supplying battery technology to Tesla, the maker of the best-selling U.S. electric car, the premium Model S sedan.
Kim Sang-eun, a Seoul-based spokesman for Samsung SDI, declined to provide details because the talks are on-going. “Nothing has been decided,” Kim said. Tesla’s Palo Alto based spokeswoman, Liz Jarvis-Shean, also confirmed the two firms were in discussions but noted that Tesla was in talks with other battery suppliers as well. “We continually evaluate best (battery) cells and technologies from all manufacturers,” Jarvis-Shean said.
The news came as shares in Samsung SDI fell as much as 3.7 percent on Friday, after a video of a burning Tesla electric car sent the U.S. firm’s shares plunging overnight. U.S. emergency officials said the fire occurred in the electric vehicle’s lithium-ion battery, the latest in a string of problems for the batteries, which are widely used in electric vehicles sold by various automakers.
For Tesla, the deal is almost a must since it only has one primary supplier of battery technology, Japan’s Panasonic, for the Model S, while next year the company is expected to start selling the next offering, the Model X.
) - Friday, October 4th, 2013 - filed under News
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