The price of the Tesla Model 3 manufactured and marketed in China has been lowered by about 8%. A discount probably made possible by the use of new LFP cell technology.
In China, Tesla battery cells are manufactured by CATL. The battery giant and the Californian manufacturer entered into a partnership in early 2020 to supply the Gigafactory 3. An alliance of choice for Tesla, CATL being an expert in LFP (lithium-iron-phosphate) technology. This cell chemistry, recently improved to gain in energy density, is more robust and costs less than its competitor NMC811 (nickel-manganese-cobalt) manufactured by LG. It also has the advantage of doing without the expensive and maligned ore of cobalt.
While Tesla does not confirm the use of LFP cells in Chinese Model 3s, it appears that the first models equipped with the technology are hitting the local market. Indeed, the manufacturer has lowered the price of its electric sedan in the standard version from 271,550 yuan (34,130 €) to 249,900 yuan (31,409 €). A variation of more than 2700 €, the origin of which is most certainly the change in cell type. In addition, the vehicle gains in autonomy according to the Chinese Tesla configurator, which displays 468 km (local NEDC standard). A bonus that leaves little doubt about the exploitation of LFP cells.