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Tesla, Panasonic eye next-gen electric vehicle batteries

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Tesla and Panasonic are collaborating in a move to create batteries optimized for use in electric vehicles.

Tesla and Panasonic are collaborating in a move to create batteries optimized for use in electric vehicles.

In the deal, Tesla will use Panasonic's battery cells in its latest battery packs. The cells feature Nickel-based Lithium ion chemistry and provide the highest energy density today, according to the companies.

Panasonic is also currently in the middle of a 3-year $1 billion investment in lithium-ion battery cell research and development. Panasonic will open a new facility in Suminoe, Japan in April.

The Holy Grail here is to develop a cell optimized for electric vehicles and bring down costs. Tesla has delivered more than 900 cars so far, but has much larger ambitions.

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Larry Dignan

Editor-in-Chief

Editor-in-Chief Larry Dignan is editor-in-chief of SmartPlanet and ZDNet. He is also editorial director of TechRepublic. Previously, he was an editor at eWeek, Baseline and CNET News. He has written for WallStreetWeek.com, Inter@ctive Week, New York Times and Financial Planning. He holds degrees from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and the University of Delaware. He is based in New York but resides in Pennsylvania. Follow him on Twitter. Disclosure