Battery cells are a crucial component for Tesla as its electric cars would essentially be a massive paperweight without them. The company has largely relied on partner Panasonic to provide the battery cells for its vehicles since 2014. A new report claims that Tesla is trying to build its own battery cells in a secret lab in a bid to reduce its reliance on Panasonic for this crucial component.

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CNBC reports that Tesla is working on manufacturing its own battery cells. If it’s able to do that successfully, Tesla would be able to offer customers higher performance vehicles that are cheaper. Moreover, it would be able to do that without having to pay or share data with an outside partner.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk has said in the past that the company has been “battery-constrained.” What that means is that the company’s production and sales of electric vehicles was held back by a lack of batteries as well as those of its Powerwall and Powerpack energy storage systems.

If the company becomes capable of making its own battery cells, it would go a long way in making Tesla as vertically integrated as possible, an aim that Musk has had for a long time. The report mentions that Tesla employees are conducting research on battery cell manufacturing at a “skunkworks lab” close to Tesla’s car factory in Fremont, California.

The employees are working on designing and prototyping advanced lithium ion battery cells in addition to new equipment and processes which enable the company to produce the cells at high volume.

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