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Apple in talks with CATL, BYD over battery supply deal for its EV, Reuters reports


Apple is in talks with Chinese power battery giant CATL and Warren Buffett-backed electric carmaker BYD about battery supplies for its planned electric car, Reuters reported on Tuesday, citing people familiar with the matter.

The report said the talks are still in the early stages and it’s unclear if they will reach an agreement.

Apple requires potential battery suppliers to have a production base in the US, the report said, adding that CATL is reluctant to build a plant in the US because of tensions between China and the US.

Apple favors the cheaper lithium iron phosphate batteries, the report said. Tesla currently uses this battery in the entry-level model of the China-made Model 3.

CATL is currently the world’s largest supplier of power batteries, while BYD sits fourth globally.

Market research firm SNE Research said earlier this month that global electric vehicle battery sales in January-April were 65.9 GWh, up 146 percent from 26.8 GWh in the same period last year.

CATL’s sales almost quadrupled to 21.4 GWh, further cementing the company’s position as the world’s largest EV battery maker, giving it a 32.5 percent market share, 10 percentage points higher than second-place LG Energy Solution’s 21.5 percent. LG Energy Solution sold 14.2 GWh from January to April.

Panasonic ranked third with 9.7 GWh and 14.7% market share in January-April, while BYD ranked fourth with 4.5 GWh and 6.9% market share in January-April.

This article was first published by Phate Zhang on CnEVPost, a website focusing on new energy vehicle news from China.

CnEVPost is a website focused on the coverage of the new energy vehicle industry in China. As with our original intent for CnTechPost, there are a lot of interesting things happening in the Chinese EV industry every day, but they are not covered by the mainstream English language media. We're here to keep track of what's happening in the Chinese EV industry and strive to be the first to publish what we see in English.