Leading American electric auto manufacturer Tesla Motors is reportedly entering into a deal with Japanese electronics corporation Panasonic to build the company’s forthcoming battery Gigafactory, which will be the biggest ever built.
Panasonic will make an initial investment of $194 to $291 million to supply the factory with the equipment needed to build the battery cells, Nikkei Asian Review reports.
Panasonic currently supplies Tesla’s lithium-ion batteries, and the California automaker is counting on the $5 billion Gigafactory to sell half-a-million Teslas by 2020. The cheaper production cost afforded by the high-output factory will also contribute the cost-halving of the company’s most-recently announced Model 3, which will retail at around half the price of the $70,000 Model S. (RELATED: S-E-X SELLS: Tesla’s New Model Fills Out The Company Lineup)
Tesla has yet to announce the location of the 10-million-square-foot factory, which states including Arizona, California, Nevada, New Mexico and Texas have been bidding to secure in order to bring home the 6,500 jobs the factory is expected to create. (RELATED: Texas Gov. Rick Perry Wants Tesla In Texas)
With the company set to announce its quarterly financial results on Thursday, International Business Times speculates more factory details could emerge following the day’s market close in New York. The Nikkei report states Tesla is hoping to begin construction this fiscal year.
Panasonic already owns a stake in Tesla, and could end up footing $1 billion of the factory’s total cost.
Tesla has made no official statement confirming the report, which states such an announcement will come by the end of July.