Tesla and BYD have developed into unlikely partners lately. A media report questioned that, but both Tesla and BYD have come out and said that their partnership is continuing.
The two companies didn’t use to be on friendly terms.
There was a time when they didn’t take each other very seriously; there’s an infamous interview in which Elon Musk literally laughs at BYD’s electric vehicles, but they have since both emerged as EV powerhouses.
While they were mainly seen as competitors, the two companies started getting cozy together last year as Tesla started to buy battery cells from BYD.
The supply deal has led us to believe the companies were now getting closer, but a new report from the Korean Economic Daily cited sources saying Tesla had decided to not renew its supply contract with BYD.
However, BYD and Tesla have both denied the report.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk even went as far as stating that the relations between Tesla and BYD are “positive”:
That media report is false. Relations between Tesla and BYD are positive.
This is good news for Tesla considering BYD is one of the rare battery suppliers that can supply LFP cells, which is a chemistry that Tesla is now heavily relying on for its cheaper vehicles.
BYD developed expertise in LFP cells with its electric buses when that was the primary type of vehicle to use the chemistry, but it has since become popular for passenger electric cars also.
The technology is currently primarily produced and used in China, but Tesla has started to deploy it globally, and other automakers, like Ford, have started to follow.