Battery replacement in future

Battery replacement in future

Will it likely be possible to buy a battery replacement when the battery technology in the next years improves?
It would be logical that tesla would offer, lest say, a 160 kWh battery for the tesla s.
Or would Tesla rather launch a Tesla s v.2, so we have to buy the new version to get the better mileage?
Thoughts anyone?

kilimats | 24 April 2013

very likely imo

Benz | 24 April 2013

Yes that will be possible with the Model S, but not with the Roadster.

Elon Musk has spoken about that and he has confirmed that that was possible (when he visited Oslo in March 2013).

ian | 24 April 2013

Asked and answered in the Bulletin Board (aka "Stickies"). The only place Tesla responds to questions. Check it out as it has lots of good info.

Tesla's answer: No. Buy the pack you want now. Don't plan on being able to upgrade it later.

However, it would be a serious mistake on Tesla's part if they don't as it would be a pretty lucrative source of income for them to offer larger packs for upgrade in the future. Of course, it would be an even larger source of income to just force owners to buy completely new vehicles to get the larger packs. Maybe there will be a battery pack after market. ;-)

In other words, we don't know. We just hope so.

ian | 24 April 2013

In response to Benz and Elon's quote. I think you have to take it with a grain of salt. I take Elon's response to mean that it is technically possible. In other words, the pack and the control of the pack are separate such that it is technically possible to swap in a larger or smaller pack. Will they actually offer the service or not? Nobody knows for sure.

Lessmog | 24 April 2013

Since we are speculating here, why not, once new tech is here?

But what to do with the old junk, as it were? Maybe install it as a big buffer for your solar home? Or sell it to Solar City for additional Super Charger capacity? Server hall backup power? Even a little bit old and decayed, a used Tesla battery would still kick some serious stuff at less than full capability. Value is not zero.

Beats tossing it to the dump, anyway.

frmercado | 24 April 2013

Li-ion batteries are highly recyclable, no need to throw anything anywhere. They'll probably buy them back to have them recycled.

negarholger | 24 April 2013

You can't buy a new one without giving the old one back. Much to dangerous to leave a 400 V 85 kWh battery in untrained hands.
Also TM plans to use them in stationary applications.

akikiki | 24 April 2013

If for no other reason than to stop the question of how big, when and how much, a manufacturer will likely so No to something than say Yes. They can change their minds or position to Yes later. Don't make promises you can't (or don't want) to keep. They would have better good will, later by stating "we found a way to do what we first said we can not do".

If they said, Yes or Maybe they would be hounded to death by people asking when and how big until the cows come home.

Its also up to us current owners to help TM keep them interested in providing us an upgrade or replacement option later. If we show no interest, why would TM ?

Brian H | 24 April 2013

As I have noted elsewhere, an "end of life" 85kWh battery at 70% is equal to or better than a new 60kWh battery; its most rapid degradation period is past.

Lessmog | 25 April 2013

So, consensus in general then. :-)

Flaninacupboard | 25 April 2013

Car manufacturers are generally in the business of manufacturing cars. As an example, Toyota released the prius in 1997. Along the way they've tried (and then put into production) lithium cells instead of nimh and plugin packs. Despite these things going into an existing platform they have NEVER offered an upgrade service, and I doubt they ever will. Tesla is -slightly- different, in that they own their own service departments, so would see the profits from doing upgrades, but how much engineering, testing etc is required and for what sized market? The lack of viable aftermarket businesses upgrading prius batteries kind of answers the question I think...

pebell | 25 April 2013

It's hearsay, but a representative of the lease company in the Netherlands that I will be leasing my Model S from told me that they were "actively negotiating" with Tesla to be able to offer an 8 year lease contract that includes a "battery pack swap" at midterm.

Of course, "actively negotiating" might just mean a spirited yes/no argument between the two parties ;-D

chicago.ev | 25 April 2013

Elon is an innovator and he also makes a good cup of Kool-aid. Don't forget he's a capitalist first and foremost. You don't become a billionaire without screwing a few people in the process. We've paid $70k-$100k for this car. It's a great car in many ways- but financially it's a boondoggle for the buyer- it's like owning a nice boat. Enjoy it, but be prepared to pay a lot for that enjoyment. This company will do us no favors whatsoever down the road. It's a car company, no better and no worse than most of the other car manufacturers

mpottinger | 25 April 2013

IF Tesla sells enough cars, I expect you will see an aftermarket develop in replacement batteries. Someone will offer more range, faster charging, better cold weather performance,lower cost, or all of the above. If the aftermarket sells enough, then you may see the OEM step in to grab some of those sales. For example, Toyota was losing money to aftermarket performance part manufacturers, now you have bolt on performance from Toyota Racing Development. It will be very interesting to see what happens in 5 to 8 years. There are a lot of really smart people out there who think they have a better solution to any given problem.

alcassfast | 25 April 2013

Yes you can use the old batteries to store energy from your solar array, at home. After all, your refrigerator doesn't need to good 0 to 60 in four seconds.

Brian H | 25 April 2013

The Chicago POV is just as debased as I thought it was, apparently.

davecolene0606 | 26 April 2013

Used packs = storage solution for Solar City = closing the circle on that = a reason to offer a swap program to the latest and greatest iteration (lighter, +/- on the power {think fully built out SC network}, less $$) = domination as a power supplier to the world = trip to Mars, and.... ONE MIIILLLLIIIION DOLLARS!!! >:p :)

gianni.terragni | 26 April 2013

"It's a great car in many ways- but financially it's a boondoggle for the buyer- it's like owning a nice boat."

As all cars over $ 25,000 (or $ 15000) , but at least it eliminates a large part of chemical and acoustic pollution

alcassfast | 26 April 2013

"good" should read "go"

No, boats will cost you 10% of the original purchase price of the boat, per year, in maintenance costs.

From what I have read BEV cars have zero maintenance costs, per year.

ian | 26 April 2013

And again in the call today Elon hinted at being able to upgrade the battery when new tech comes along.

So, there you go. ;-)

mbcaffe | 26 April 2013

today's service plan announcement should teach us a lesson about prepaying for a battery replacement. Be patient and a better offer will come.

Brian H | 26 April 2013

The "better offer" has no costs attached. The replacement may still be a better deal per kWh capacity. Predictions are hard, especially about the future.

djm12 | 26 April 2013

Actually, the smart thing to do for 99% of people is to just keep driving the heck out of your Tesla regardless of battery degradation. When your car no longer meets your needs, for instance, insufficient range, upgrade your Tesla with a new Tesla! In the rare event that your battery fails, simply replace it. This is the same model people follow for their iPhones and other electronic gadgets that also have batteries that slowly lose charging power over time. Only a few 1st generation Prius owners have needed to replace batteries after ten years. It's really not that big a deal.

eisnerw | 27 April 2013

Nicknike - can you clarify? When more dense kw comes along, why can't TM install a higher capacity pack in place of the existing one?

NorCal Tesla Driver | 27 April 2013

There is nothing about the service announcement that is a "lesson" except for the service options (including for those like me that purchased the contract) being made better and more whole.

In the case of the battery, I expect no less.