Tesla 4680 battery vs CATL CTP battery

New generation EV batteries compared – Tesla, BYD and CATL

As the battle to have the most advanced EV battery technology continues. Key battery makers’ products are being compared, which are – Tesla 4680 cells, BYD Blade, and CATL Qilin structural batteries. These batteries are expected to have a chance to become the trailblazers of the next generation of electric vehicle batteries.

Tesla 4680 battery vs CATL CTP battery
Image credits- Tycorun Batteries

Tesla 4680 battery cells were introduced during the Battery Day event. These are used alongside the company’s structural battery pack. Meanwhile, the BYD released its Blade batteries which would be adopting a non-modular approach. Finally, CATL’s Qilin batteries are also structural batteries categorized to be in the same segment.

Electric vehicle battery enthusiast Jordan Giesige of YouTube’s The Limiting Factor channel recently conducted a comparison of the advantages and disadvantages of Tesla, BYD, and CATL’s next-generation structural packs. Each battery pack was evaluated according to several factors, such as design, rigidity, packing and energy density, and safety, before being ranked. It should be noted that the figures used in the comparisons are drawn from estimates and materials released by Tesla, BYD, and CATL themselves, not current real-world observations. As noted by Giesige, Tesla’s 4680 structural battery packs utilize hundreds of cylindrical cells with a cooling ribbon in between every other row of cells.

BYD Blade Vs CATL Qilin Vs Tesla 4680 Pack
Image credits- The Limiting Factor/Teslarati

Cells

CATL Qilin batteries could be fitted with both nickel and iron-based cells, integrate thermal pads, the liquid cooling plate. Also, the cross bracing is present to create what could be described as structural cooling. It’s structural cooling is placed between each row of prismatic battery cells, and the cells themselves are placed into the pack directly without any modules. BYD Blade batteries use iron-based prismatic cells, though these cells are longer and thinner than those used by CATL. The cells are then stretched across the BYD Blade battery pack, allowing the cells themselves to replace conventional steel beams.

The YouTube host stated that Tesla’s 4680 structural battery pack would likely be the most rigid among its peers. Tesla’s 4680 pack loses out in terms of packing density, however, as BYD and CATL’s use of prismatic cells maximizes volumetric energy density. With this in mind, and considering that CATL’s Qilin batteries can be fitted with high-energy density nickel-based cells, a nickel-based Qilin battery would likely be more energy dense than a nickel-based Tesla 4680 pack or a BYD Blade structural battery, which uses less energy dense iron-based cells.As for cooling, Giesige noted that the BYD Blade batteries’ plate cooling would likely fall short of the Tesla 4680 pack and CATL Qilin battery’s cooling systems. Overall, Giesige noted that Tesla’s 4680 cells are likely the best all-rounder compared to its peers in the structural battery segment.