Tesla has agreed to buy energy storage company Maxwell Technologies for $218 million US in an all-stock deal that could help the electric car maker produce batteries that hold more energy and last longer at a time when it needs to cut costs and faces growing competition.
Tesla is rapidly increasing production of its Model 3 sedan and needs to lower the price to reach a broader customer base than its pure luxury vehicles.
Maxwell executives told investors in January that it had developed and patented a “dry electrode” technology that could significantly increase the driving range and reduce the cost of electric vehicle batteries. In a presentation, Maxwell said it expected strategic alliances “within six months” centred around this technology.
The company also makes ultracapacitors, which discharge energy faster than batteries and are seen as complementing battery technology.