Elon Musk's Tesla is set to become an independent company that won't be reliant on other brands when it comes to the production of its batteries.
According to CNBC, the electric vehicle firm is poised to create its own battery cells and that the firm is currently building the means to manufacture it. The information is said to have come from current and former employees.
At present, Tesla relies on Panasonic when it comes to the production of its battery cells. The partnership, which was inked back in 2014, proved to be an expensive deal for the EV brand. The battery cells of Tesla covers a significant portion of the cost of every vehicle so manufacturing its own can help cut the cost.
Aside from cost control, having its own battery pack and battery cells could result in better performance among Tesla vehicles since it can fully apply the technology that Musk's company intends its vehicles to have. Per research by IHS Markit, the battery system of an electric car comprises the main cost of production.
Battery constraints are said to be the main problem in Tesla's current production line and the reason why they couldn't keep up with the demand for the EV brand. In a shareholders meeting early this month, Musk acknowledged that the battery system is one of the hurdles of the company.
Now the company is said to be experimenting on its battery system in a "secret" laboratory referred to as a "skunkworks lab" in Tesla's Kato Road facility just a few minutes from its Fremont plant. Tesla batteries are being manufactured at the Gigafactory in Nevada, which is co-owned and operated by Panasonic.
Per the report, those in Tesla's battery R&D teams are currently focused on creating a prototype of an advanced lithium ion battery cells system. The company is also said to be creating equipment that would eventually help Tesla to produce the cells in high volume.
Although there is no official confirmation that such experiments are actually happening, there have been several job listings in the past month calling for various engineers who are well-versed in battery cell design, battery production machinery and manufacturing.
Should Tesla create its own battery system, however, the company needs to overcome several pertinent hurdles especially now that it is undergoing cost-cutting initiatives.
This article originally appeared in IBTimes US.