Panasonic Holdings, a Telsa battery maker, announced Tuesday that it will supply lithium-ion batteries to U.S. electric vehicle startup Lucid Group Inc. beginning next year as the Japanese company seeks to expand its customer base.
As of now, nearly all of Panasonic’s automotive battery production is going to Tesla as the leading US EV manufacturer rapidly expands output. While Panasonic, which plans to build a new $4 billion battery plant in Kansas, is benefiting from the increasing demands, Japanese officials are cautious of relying too heavily on a single customer.
“Partnerships with technology-leading EV manufacturers such as Lucid are critical to our mission,” Kazuo Tadanobu, the head of Panasonic’s energy business said in a press release.
Beginning in 2024, the company will use Panasonic batteries in its long-range Lucid Air and its Gravity SUV.
In August, Lucid halved its EV production forecast blaming extraordinary supply chain and logistics challenges. The company, which says it has 37,000 reservations, now expects to produce between 6,000 and 7,000 luxury electric vehicles this year.
Early this year, a report from Moody’s Investor Service indicated the demand for EV battery production is expected to soar as automakers increasingly comply with emission standards and boost their production of battery electric vehicles (BEV’s). Just recently, the DOE announced General Motors & LG Energy Solution would be receiving a $2.5 billion loan to help build lithium-ion battery cell manufacturing plants.