Panasonic Wants to Extend Partnership with Tesla into Self-driving Cars

Tesla Self-drivingPanasonic wants to extend its partnership with electric car maker Tesla away from electric car batteries – by getting involved in Tesla’s the self-driving car act – according to Panasonic’s CEO Kazuhiro Tsuga.

In an interview with Reuters, the chief of the Japanese electronics multinational expressed interest in expanding the partnership.

“We are deeply interested in Tesla’s self-driving system,” Tsuga told Reuters. “We are hoping to expand our collaboration by jointly developing devices for that, such as sensors.”

Tsuga added that a possible candidate would be the organic photoconductive film CMOS image sensors, currently under development at Panasonic, which enable high-speed sensing of moving objects without distortion.

Currently, Panasonic is the exclusive supplier of batteries for Tesla’s Model S, Model X, and upcoming Model 3. It also plans on contributing $1.6bn to Tesla’s $5bn giant battery factory, the Gigafactory.

In addition, Panasonic and Tesla have been working together in solar energy – by manufacturing and producing photovoltaic (PV) cells and modules to be used in a solar energy system.