Tesla Gives Updates on 4680 Battery Cell Production and Cybertruck Ramp

By Kevin Armstrong
4680 Batteries in a Cybertruck
4680 Batteries in a Cybertruck
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Tesla's latest earnings call updated listeners on the Cybertruck, which started deliveries last month. Elon Musk stated, “It's like finally, the future looks like the future… That's our best product ever.” The CEO’s statement sums up the excitement surrounding a vehicle that has captivated the imagination of generations.

Vaibhav Taneja, the company’s CFO, added, "Anywhere you go, people look at you, they give you thumbs up."

Cybertruck Demand and Production

The demand for the Cybertruck has been “off the hook,” according to Musk. Tesla revealed an impressive conversion rate from reservations to orders.

Karn Budhiraj, VP of Supply Chain of Tesla, emphasized, "The reservation to order conversion rates so far has been very, very encouraging. If the trend continues as it is very likely to be, we will soon sell out all the builds in 2024." This statement highlights the strong market demand for the Cybertruck, and Tesla's ability to meet consumer expectations will have to accelerate. “The numbers keep growing. So we're now all hands on deck, focused on ramping so we can fulfill all the demands in a reduced wait time.”

Cybertruck base
Cybertruck base
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Tesla's approach to meeting this demand is equally noteworthy. "It's important to emphasize that this is very much a production-constrained situation, not a demand-constrained situation," Musk stated, reaffirming that Cybertruck production will hit 250,000 per year. He also mentioned that Tesla could raise the price to manage demand, “obviously, we could dramatically raise the price, but that doesn't feel right to us to sort of gouge people for early delivery,” suggesting a commitment to affordability.

4680 Battery Cells: Expansion and Growth

A crucial element in the Cybertruck's production ramp-up is the 4680 battery cells. Tesla has been working tirelessly to increase the production of these cells. Karn Budhiraj reported, "To date, 4680 production is ahead of the ramp with actually weeks of finished cell inventory. And the goal is to keep it that way, not only for Cyber, but for our future vehicle programs.” This progress is critical to Tesla's ability to meet the Cybertruck demand without sacrificing quality or delaying delivery.

Tesla's manufacturing capabilities are set for significant expansion. The company is currently running one production line and one assembly line and using two assembly lines in addition to yield and rate improvement trials for the 4680. Budhiraj stated, “We have a fourth in commissioning, and four more will be installed starting in Q3 this year. So, definitely, this is a big year for ramping 4680.

This expansion will cater to Cybertruck's demand and bolster Tesla's overall production capacity for future vehicle programs. The executives emphasized that some companies only work on batteries, but it’s just one piece of Tesla. Musk said, “It's not just that it's a 46-millimeter diameter by 80-millimeter cell. That's just the dimensions. There's a tremendous amount of new technology in the cell itself.” And you thought Tesla was a car company.

Tesla Introduces Most Affordable Car: Long Range RWD Model 3 with 363-Mile Range for $34,990

By Karan Singh
Not a Tesla App

Tesla has brought back the Model 3 Long Range Rear-Wheel Drive variant, which starts at $42,490. However, due to the batteries in the Long Range model, it qualifies for the $7,500 federal EV rebate. This makes this new model the cheapest model in Tesla’s lineup after the federal rebate that comes off at the point of sale.

After the federal rebate, this model is $34,990, exactly $4,000 less than the standard RWD model with the smaller LFP battery.

Improved Range

The Long Range RWD variant boasts a range of 363mi (vs 341mi for the AWD, and 272mi for the regular RWD), and a 0-60mph of 4.9sec (vs 4.2sec for the AWD). This makes the new Long Range RWD Model 3 Tesla’s longest-range economic vehicle (Model 3 / Model Y). The Model S AWD boasts an impressive 402-mile EPA estimate.

Other than the lack of a front motor for handling in rough or slippery terrain, or having a faster 0-60, the Long Range RWD is a fantastic option for most people.

It’s worth noting that only the Long Range AWD model can unlock Tesla’s Acceleration Boost, which increases power and reduces the vehicle’s 0-60 times by about half a second.

Model

Price

Price After Rebate

0-60 MPH

Range

Model 3 RWD

$38,990

-

5.8s

272mi

Model 3 LR RWD

$42,490

$34,990

4.9s

363mi

Model 3 LR AWD

$47,490

$39,990

4.2s

341mi

Model 3 Performance

$54,990

$47,490

2.9s

303mi

Availability

For now, the Model 3 Long Range RWD model is only available in the United States, with no availability in Canada.

Tesla FSD V12.5 to Combine City and Highway Stacks, Introduce Vehicle-to-Fleet Communication and More

By Karan Singh
Not a Tesla App

As FSD V12.4.3 continues to get released to more vehicles, Elon Musk has posted that FSD V12.5 is already in testing and will include several key features.

The improvements in v12.5 are supposed to focus on rarer, more complex situations and vehicle-to-fleet communication. Tesla’s Autopilot lead, Ashok Elluswamy, also mentioned that FSD would gain the ability to go in reverse around this time.

Merge City & Highway Stacks

FSD v12 has been a multi-stack setup so far, with a city-streets stack that is end-to-end, and an older highway stack that was carried over from v11. FSD v12.5 will once again merge the city/highway stacks according to Musk, who confirmed the feature yesterday. That means that there will no longer be an implicit highway stack.

This could cause some regressions during highway driving, similar to the ones we experienced when Tesla first merged highway and city stacks back in FSD v11. Ultimately, when the issues were ironed out, we ended up with a smoother and better Autopilot experience on the highway. When FSD v12.5 rolls around, we may see some similar issues but expect FSD v12.5 to do to highways what v12 did for city driving.

Vehicle-to-Fleet Communications

Tesla’s FSD relies heavily upon maps, with the mapping information designating routing and lane changes. When vehicles encounter difficulties, they are unable to communicate that back to the rest of the fleet. This results in every vehicle encountering the same problem. With FSD V12.5, vehicles will be able to communicate road closures or other obstacles back to the rest of the fleet in real-time. This will turn FSD into software that’s constantly improving as the fleet gathers more data, instead of having to wait for a software update.

Cybertruck Finally Gets FSD

In a recent post on X, Musk also confirmed that V12.5 will finally bring FSD to the Cybertruck. Currently, all Cybertrucks only have access to Traffic Aware Cruise Control (TACC). Autopilot and FSD capabilities should arrive alongside all the other features.

Actually Smart Summon

Musk has talked quite a bit about Actually Smart Summon. With FSD 12.5, the new vision-based summon may finally be released. This will introduce Smart Summon capabilities to vision-only cars for the first time. However, it’s expected to be a drastic improvement for all vehicles in similar ways to the new Autopark. The new summon has been tied to the ability to move the vehicle in reverse by Tesla’s Autopilot lead, so expect either both of them to arrive in FSD 12.5, or be held off for a later release.

Release Date

Musk originally mentioned that FSD V12.5 would be released in late June, however, there were several delays with FSD 12.4 and that time frame has now come and gone. FSD 12.4 was initially released in May 2024, but it went through several lengthy revisions before it was introduced to public testers. Going by that time frame, it appears that FSD 12.5 was expected to be released about 4-6 weeks after FSD 12.4. If FSD 12.4.3 is finally got a good spot, we could see FSD 12.5 become available in the next 4-6 weeks or about late August.

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