LFP continues to dominate the battery production in China

Tesla Model 3 MIC waiting to be shipped to Europe
Tesla Model 3 MIC waiting to be shipped to Europe

The cobalt-free battery chemistry LFP (LiFePO4) continues to dominate the battery production in China and its market share keeps growing every month.


Let’s see the data.


Battery production in China (May 2021)

  • LFP: 8,8 GWh (63,8 %)
  • NCM/NCA: 5 GWh (36,2 %)
  • Total: 13,8 GWh


Last month in China LFP battery production increased by 317,3 % compared to May last year.


It’s clear that the Tesla Model 3 MIC (Made in China) is currently one of the biggest drivers of the increased demand for LFP battery cells.

Moreover, local media is reporting that the Tesla Model Y MIC is expected to receive a more affordable version with a LFP battery starting next month. If confirmed, it’ll be another big push for cobalt-free batteries.

Currently, the Tesla Model Y in China starts at 347.900 yuan (44.901 euros), but it needs to get below 300.000 yuan (38.719 euros) to become eligible for government subsidies.


Next year, LNMO, which is another cobalt-free battery chemistry, should also get some traction.

Tesla and Volkswagen expect LFP and LNMO to become the standard battery chemistries in electric cars, relegating high-nickel content chemistries – such as NCMA – to niche electric vehicles that require extra range.


Battery chemistries comparison by Tesla

Battery chemistries comparison by Tesla


Anyway, I wonder how long will it take before electric cars made in Europe get cobalt-free batteries. Hopefully the battery cell plant currently under construction in Germany by CATL starts producing LFP cells very soon and at full speed.



More info:



Pedro Lima

My interest in electric transportation is mostly political. I’m tired of coups and wars for oil. My expectation is that the adoption of electric transportation will be a factor for peace and democracy all over the world.

6 Responses

  1. Maximilian Holland says:

    Great news, thanks Pedro.

    LFP has now proven itself in the China BEV market and is in process of proving itself in Europe. Bjorn Nyland reports that all (almost all?) European sales of base Tesla Model 3 are now the Shanghai LFP version, which is great news. After some initial tweaks to charging profile and thermal management (relative to the NCx versions) the LFP vehicles appear to be doing fine and Europeans are happy with them.

    => This should mean that LFP will increasing gain trust and a solid reputation among European consumers, and hopefully make the entry of BYD, and perhaps even vehicles in the “SGMW mini” class, more likely in the coming months and years.

    The Model Y LFP chatter is also very positive – will be great when it arrives and will reinforce the above trends.

    There are many diverse pathways to useful electrochemical energy – many of them with widely distributed input minerals – this wide distribution and broad substitutability create natural barriers to monopolization, political distortions and abuses.

    • Pedro Lima says:

      That’s great.

      Now that the Tesla Model 3 LFP version is doing so well in Europe, maybe other automakers will learn something.

      • Maximilian Holland says:

        I think with the progress in LFP chemistry and CTP designs that you’ve been reporting on, LFP has a very bright future for all mass market passenger BEVs, and the smarter international OEMs will surely catch on to it (VW already have, as you’ve reported many times). If they don’t then consumers will happily buy more competitively priced BEVs from BYD and China peers.

        This is going to be interesting to watch.

  2. Famlin says:

    Seems 2021 will see 1:1 ratio between LFP : NCM on global scale.

  3. Jens says:

    Why would LMNO be expected to deliver less range than NCM. You need at least NCMA to near the performance of LMNO due to the 4.7V?

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