With its new engine, Tesla will get rid of rare earths

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Few Tesla announcements on Investor Day this March 1, 2023, but confirmation of a new permanent magnet motor that does not contain rare earths.

For those who were impatient to discover the long-awaited announcements during Tesla’s Investor Day this March 1, and who had not had the courage to go to the end of the more than two hours of conference, do not worry: there was no No It’s a lot to sink your teeth into.

It actually said a lot of interesting and indigestible things, but nothing that we expected about the upcoming models, in particular the so-called Model 2, or even about the Hardware 4.

However, here and there, there were a few announcements to take advantage of the jump. Just like with the arrival of V4 Superchargers. Or on the “next generation platform” and the desire to stop rare earths.

Back to Teslas without rare earths

In fact, Tesla has shown in one of his slides a new permanent magnet electric motor, which does not contain any rare earth elements. The American firm explained that it had already reduced the use of rare earths in the production of its cars by a quarter between 2017 and 2022, but simply wants to eradicate them.

However, Tesla has not always used rare earths in its vehicles since if we find them in DC permanent magnet motors, they are no longer in their AC induction motors. And these were used in Tesla’s first vehicles, the Model S and Model X, before the arrival of the Model 3 changed that. And that finally, the whole range does not return to rare earths.

By stopping rare earths, Tesla would reduce production costs, but at the same time increase the efficiency of its engines.

At the moment, we don’t know much more about the future rare-earth-free electric motor, not even which models will be the first to take advantage of it. But eventually, the entire range will benefit as Tesla wants to stop them altogether.

designated materials

In general, it is much more in the motors of electric vehicles where we find the rare earths, rather than in the batteries, contrary to what we often hear. The latter do not use any rare earth.

Neodymium is one of them. By “rare earths,” we mean elements that are designated as such on the periodic table of elements. And not lithium or cobalt as we hear all too often, even though they are critical materials. Also, lithium ion batteries do not contain rare earths.

As a reminder, rare earths stand out in particular and represent in particular the workhorse of anti-EVs. And in fact they generate many problems, in particular with regard to their extraction, or their supply. But remember that thermal and hybrid cars are not exempt from rare earths, with the catalysts that contain them.

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