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Tesla is apparently postponing battery plans in Germany


At some point, Tesla wants to produce complete batteries in Grünheide. In the future, however, important components should first come from the USA, and value creation should take place there. The reason: taxes.

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A Tesla Model Y at the open day: Complete production of the batteries in Grünheide should "pause"

Photo: Patrick Pleul / dpa

The new construction of the Tesla plant in Berlin's commuter belt is considered a beacon project for the sustainable auto industry in Germany - moving away from combustion engines towards electromobility.

A key component here is the production of the batteries required for the drive.

According to the Reuters news agency, the US carmaker has now put off its plans to produce complete batteries in Germany.

The focus of cell production is currently in the United States due to tax incentives, a Tesla spokeswoman said.

The USA is currently rewarding green investments in its country as part of the Inflation Reduction Act. Critics see this as a protectionist policy from which other countries could suffer.

Read more about how Europe's battery industry is falling behind in the race to the US here.

Battery cell manufacturing problems in California and Texas

That does not mean that Tesla is giving up the plans in Germany, she would rather speak of "pause", said the Tesla spokeswoman.

"We have started the local assembly of battery systems in the Gigafactory Berlin-Brandenburg and are currently ramping up production," it said.

In the near future, these would also be installed in the vehicles built in Grünheide near Berlin.

Battery cell production there is not yet fully operational.

The company announced that production preparations for individual components such as the electrode were in full swing.

This also includes shipping the electrodes to the USA.

The US carmaker had originally planned to produce the entire battery at its Grünheide site in Brandenburg, with a peak capacity of over 50 gigawatt hours per year.

At the request of Reuters, the Brandenburg Ministry of Economics said on Monday that Tesla had started producing battery systems in Grünheide and was preparing to manufacture battery cell components.

And: "The company has prioritized further production steps in the USA because the tax conditions are more favorable there," it said.

Does Tesla still receive subsidies?

The Federal Ministry of Economics, led by Green politician Robert Habeck, wants to get to the bottom of the possible reduction in Tesla battery production in Germany.

A spokesman said: "We are working on clarifying the reasons for this." According to the Federal Ministry of Economics, Tesla has not received any state subsidies from the federal government so far, there is only one application.

Company boss Elon Musk had announced the Berlin Gigafactory as the largest battery factory in the world.

At the opening in March 2022, he said the battery plant will reach series production by the end of 2023.

Tesla is struggling to ramp up production of the so-called 4680 battery cells at its Fremont, California, and Austin, Texas factories.

Experts attribute this to new and untried techniques.

In late January, the electric-car maker announced it would invest more than $3.6 billion in expanding its Gigafactory complex in Nevada to build two new factories -- one to mass-produce the long-delayed Semi electric truck and the others for making new battery cell 4680.


Source: spiegel

All business articles on 2023-02-22

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