Tesla CTO Presentation In Southern California
On October 10, Tesla CTO & co-founder JB Straubel gave a presentation at the Southern California Energy Summit. Unfortunately, I wasn’t at that one, but JB’s presentation was posted online, so I decided to pull out some interesting slides. For Tesla fanatics, I’m not sure if anything will be new for you (perhaps the quote at the end?), but it’s still fun stuff to see. I’m adding some commentary in the captions, but there’s generally not much more to add than is on the slides.
Today, you’d be hard-pressed to find an electric car that doesn’t use lithium-ion batteries. However, 20 years ago, no one was using them, and low-performance lead-acid batteries were the norm.
Tesla Motors actually built the first lithium-ion EV powertrain.
With the Tesla Roadster, Tesla created the first true electric vehicle of desire.
Tesla then followed up by building an electric vehicle from the ground up, with a strong focus on energy storage packaging and cost. Again, the high energy density of lithium-ion batteries (from Panasonic) was key.
But one of the biggest innovations from Tesla is how it has turned cars into yet another modern technology with improvements almost continuously made via over-the-air updates. The software advantage is a core focus of Tesla and is staggering. It is redefining what a “good car” should have… but it is the only company offering this new ingredient.
The result: perhaps the best mass-manufactured car in history. I think it is.
And next on tap looks at least as special.
JB notes that lithium-ion battery energy density has doubled in 10 years, and he projects that trend to continue. That’s a big deal. This is the essence of modern electric cars.
When you look at how the electricity price trend (and stability) compares to the gasoline price trend (and volatility), things get really interesting. This slide gives me butterflies.
And then there are the Superchargers, which offer Tesla owners super-fast, free charging when they are away from home and on a long trip. No other electric car companies compares with what it is offering.
Europe’s Tesla Supercharger network got started a bit later, but it is really starting to fill in as well.
Aside from its electric vehicles, Tesla now has three energy storage products on the market, most recently adding residential and commercial energy storage systems.
By the way, if you ever get someone questioning the electricity needs of electric vehicles, you can show them this picture, which has a little blue rectangle showing how much solar would theoretically be needed to offset all US passenger vehicle miles driven if they were driven by electric vehicles.
And this quote is precious. Seriously, where and when did this come out!
For more, here’s the full presentation.
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