Kilo-ing watt evidence there is for the new battery is proving troublesome
A post on Facebook earlier this year by Tesla brought up for the first time the idea of a 100 kWh battery, but did not give enthusiasts any reason to hope that it would be coming any time soon. The post stated “100% electric” under a photo of a Tesla next to a ‘100’ sign, sparking debate over whether the post signified the release of a 100 kWh battery. This would be electrifying news, offering drivers a range of over 380 miles, and trumping the range-leading Model S 90D which is currently rated at 294 miles in the US. See the chart below which compares the current range of Tesla EVs.
The light in the eyes of EV enthusiasts burnt out, however, when a Tesla spokesperson stated that: “We are not announcing a new battery and we don’t comment on rumour or speculation”.
However, those lights are burning once again, thanks to the fact-finding of Kenteken.tv. On Friday morning the Dutch news source announced fairly concrete evidence that Tesla is able to produce a 100 kWh battery. This information comes from datasets published by the Dutch Vehicle Authority (RDW), available via https://opendata.rdw.nl/.
It shows that Tesla is granted 78 type models in the EU, two of which are type 100D and 100X. Although it is noted that the power is the same in models 90D and 100D, there is a difference in range noted, i.e. 509 km (316 miles) and 613 km (380 miles), respectively. The difference between the 90X and the 100X is the same. So the 100 kWh battery would give Tesla a competitive edge against conventional internal combustion engines (ICEs).
Electrans can only wonder when this new battery will be released. Speculators assume that Tesla will produce 100 kWh batteries by 2020, based on the expected average output of its long-awaited Gigafactory. Until then, it seems that Elon Musk’s objective will be to keep speculation over the new battery high, and certainty low. This new evidence threatens that objective, meaning an announcement may come sooner rather than later.