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Through scale alone, Tesla hopes the gigafactory will bring down battery costs by 30%. A $175 per kWh battery would be “very competitive” with even a mass market vehicle, Langan writes.
Musk put things in even more stark terms: [Tesla Motors] won’t be able to function at all if it doesn’t build a gigafactory — and [Tesla] will ultimately need hundreds [of Gigabattery Factories] of them. “We can’t figure out any other way to scale,” the Wall Street Journal’s Cassandra Sweet quoted Musk as saying.
There are advances in battery technology. Lithium Sulfur and better lithium ion anodes and cathodes that can up the energy density and bring down costs towards $50 per kwh.