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Thread: Batteries not upgradeable in the future?!

  1. #21
    Model X #1417
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    I'd be quite surprised if in a few years either Tesla or various 3rd parties didn't have replacement and upgrade battery packs for the S and X. Assuming that Tesla continues selling at least 10K cars per year, that starts getting to be a worthwhile specialty market, probably well over $100M/year.

  2. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by JakeP View Post
    I would also wonder if this question was asked or was being answered in the context of the battery replacement insurance program.
    Consider: a 40kWh owner wants to prepay an 85kWh battery. Would TM accept his $12,000?

  3. #23
    Model S P2681 qwk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Johan View Post
    Now, in 8 years the question is will the 3400mAh cells still be manufactured?
    The Model S uses the 3.1Ah cells.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RDoc View Post
    I'd be quite surprised if in a few years either Tesla or various 3rd parties didn't have replacement and upgrade battery packs for the S and X. Assuming that Tesla continues selling at least 10K cars per year, that starts getting to be a worthwhile specialty market, probably well over $100M/year.
    Yeah, the automotive aftermarket is a huge business. Since you can buy the 18650 form factor cells, any reputable EV shop should be able to replace them in the future. The price will depend on the future cost of batteries, which no one can predict.

  4. #24
    ERIC VFX vfx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by qwk View Post
    ..., any reputable EV shop should be able to replace them in the future.....
    To think that's gonna be a thing...

  5. #25
    Member ToddRLockwood's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zdre View Post
    I asked my product specialist about upgrading to a bigger battery capacity in the future (i.e. 8 years) and got this response:

    "Batteries will not be upgradable in the future.* As technology improves, their range may increase, but it will still be the same size battery pack.* You will be required to replace battery packs like for like."

    I am shocked by this, as I don't see any technical or logical reason for this limitation. I am also confused how the same capacity batteries could provide increased range.
    My take on his comment is that the kWh capacity of the battery pack would remain the same. If the cells become more powerful by then, there will be fewer of them in the battery pack. The reason is that the wiring and circuitry beyond the pack is sized to deal with a certain maximum load. This is also why a 40kWh battery cannot be used on a Supercharger.
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  6. #26
    S85 - VIN:P05130 - 3/2/13 jerry33's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zdre View Post
    "Batteries will not be upgradable in the future.* As technology improves, their range may increase, but it will still be the same size battery pack.* You will be required to replace battery packs like for like."
    I read this as "It's the same physical size, but the range may increase." I don't think anyone expects the battery pack to change in dimensions and still be able to be installed on a Model S.
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  7. #27
    Model S P2681 qwk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jerry33 View Post
    I read this as "It's the same physical size, but the range may increase." I don't think anyone expects the battery pack to change in dimensions and still be able to be installed on a Model S.
    I think the the common misconception here is swapping packs with a different number of cells in them, to just replacing the existing cells with higher capacity ones. The latter is physically and technically possible as long as the cells are the same form factor and the voltage parameters are similar. The former would also be possible as long as the firmware and hardware are the same on the vehicles, information which only Tesla has at this time.

  8. #28
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    Also consider the possibility that in 8 years there might be a viable aftermarket supply for battery packs. It wouldn't surprise me.

  9. #29
    Senior Member JRP3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ToddRLockwood View Post
    My take on his comment is that the kWh capacity of the battery pack would remain the same. If the cells become more powerful by then, there will be fewer of them in the battery pack. The reason is that the wiring and circuitry beyond the pack is sized to deal with a certain maximum load. This is also why a 40kWh battery cannot be used on a Supercharger.
    I disagree. I think it means that the physical size of the pack will be the same but it's capacity could be higher.
    Batteries will not be upgradable in the future.* As technology improves, their range may increase, but it will still be the same size battery pack.*
    Same sized pack, increased range, that's an upgrade. So lets say a 4ah cell in the 18650 form factor, same number of cells, same pack dimensions, larger actual capacity and increased range. Wiring and circuitry need not change at all since the power in and out of the pack is controlled by the inverter and charger.

  10. #30
    P#8946 VIN 03225 nrcooled's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sublimaze1 View Post
    Well, one thing for sure: If you have 100K+ miles on an ICE, and you had a major problem with, say, the engine - it is not uncommon to have non OEM parts to replace - say - a rod or a cylinder or something, and BMW/MB/etc. doesn't really care as they are out of warranty - so one may opt to go to a Euro-auto-haus and fix their car in their own chosen fashion.

    As EVs become more mainstream, and 7-10 years down the road, someone will have a company that - say - offers to replace your 85kWh battery with a non-OEM 170kWh battery pack, taking the old one, placing it vertically in your garage, hook it up to your breaker, installing a computer interface, and giving you a backup "generator" for power failures.

    All this, for less than the price of what Tesla would offer.
    This = nail+head.

    I dare anyone to go into BMW or Merc dealer/service and ask them to install a M or AMG engine into their standard 5 series or E-Class and see what they say. They will look at you stupid and point you to the showroom floor where you can buy an M or AMG badged car.

    The change the OP is asking for is really handled in the aftermarket. There is nothing stopping you from buying the battery pack out of a crashed Model S or buying an aftermarket unit that can be installed in your car. Of course this will void any remaining warranty and place all liability on you (and what ever assurance or warranty offered by the manufacturer of the pack) but may be completely worth it to you. This is also dependent upon the aftermarket supporting and embracing the Model S and that only happens if there is enough of them sold and enough demand for that product.

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