How to Compete with Tesla and Migrate from Early Adopters to the Mass Market

On June 6, 2017, Tesla announced in their 2017 Annual Shareholders Meeting that they plan to build 10-20 more Li-ion battery Gigafactories worldwide in the next few years. The projected 2020 Li-ion global manufacturing capacity is ~ 90GWh. Tesla’s Nevada 35GWh by 2020 Gigafactory represents over 1/3 of that global projection. What will Tesla become with 10-20 additional Gigafactories?

In the glory days of Detroit, Munich and Stuttgart, controlling the engine was paramount to product development. The Li-ion battery pack is the engine of the future for the billions of investments going into electric vehicles that the auto OEMs are putting into development.

Is Tesla not only owning the current electric vehicle market share, but also laying the groundwork to take control of the industry’s OEM’s destiny? If so, then to own your own destiny, you must own the engine.

All of the transportation OEMs, whether American, European or Asian, have introduced competitively priced, very aesthetically pleasing, well-equipped EVs. This is expected to get them a ticket to the game. But what gets them on the field to be playing and winning the game? The answer is:

To be a player and not just a spectator, one must stop giving in to his competitor’s ascendency and assertively deal with the elephant in the room! Aesthetically beautiful and sleek design is expected and required. To be disruptive in any electrically dependent product, range must be extended. That is the elephant in the room. Buyers are anxious because of limited range.

Granted, there will always be the brand loyalists and the early adopters, but that represents far less than 1% of the ~90 million cars and trucks sold during 2016. To be successful with EVs, OEMs must migrate from the early adopters to the mass market buying them!

Waiting around for fuel prices to surge or for more subsidies does not a strategy make; that is only hope. The general public, the mass market must be motivated to change from the gasoline engine to an EV. Addressing the core issue of getting consumers in the mass market to embrace EVs means addressing the elephant -- buyer anxiety of limited miles between recharging. Until this is addressed the mass market will never be penetrated.

How to address the elephant in the room: provide the mass market what they want, which is more time behind the wheel. Extend their driving range! There are only two ways to do this:

1)      Add more batteries

2)      Dramatically extend the energy storage capability of the battery pack.

Adding more batteries adds more weight and cost with minimal range extension.

Dramatically extending the energy storage capability of the battery pack means moving away from the status quo anode active materials of 372 mAh/g graphite paired with 1,550 mAh/g dangerous silicon oxide to graphite paired with 3,575 mAh/g safe silicon metal – specifically, Paraclete Energy’s SM-Silicon™ that can be priced less than graphite from a $/kWh. Paraclete’s SM-Silicon™ also enables the increase of the cathode without increasing the size or weight of the battery. The net effect is expanded range.

When comparing the 18650 made with SiOx that is in the Tesla Model S with the same 18650 but made with ~20% SM-Silicon™ the range of the model S will extend from 265 to 340.  Also, by using Paraclete’s SM-Silicon™ the total capacity of the battery pack will increase by 5.8 KAh per cycle and thereby increase the total battery capacity by 2.2 MAh over the course of the battery pack’s warranty life.

 See the below tables:

Designing a stylish EV is no longer sufficient to compete. OEMs must give consumers more time behind the wheel. The most efficient means of accomplishing this goal is to dramatically increase the storage capacity of the battery pack by using higher density materials in the batteries. Bringing products on the market that show best-in-class range enabled by Paraclete Energy’s silicon metal based safe SM-Silicon™ is how to compete with the new breed of competitor. 


Paraclete Energy will be exhibiting at The Battery Show at booth #1701
View the full exhibitor list here.