BYD, a Chinese company, will soon begin supplying Tesla with batteries

battery designs and is made of lithium-iron-phosphate

BYD executive vice president Lian Yubo recently told China's state-owned CGTN that Tesla would soon become one of its clients. 

"We are now good friends with Elon Musk because we are preparing to supply Tesla very soon," Yubo explained

Tesla currently gets its lithium-iron-phosphate from battery giant CATL and uses it in the cars manufactured at its Shanghai Gigafactory. 

CATL has grown to be such an important supplier for Tesla that nearly half of all vehicles built in the first quarter featured lithium-iron-phosphate batteries.

less expensive alternative to the nickel-cobalt battery cells that are commonly used in the West. 

Panasonic and LG Energy Solutions supply some of Tesla's nickel-cobalt cells.

battery supply deal between BYD and Tesla are unknown, and neither car manufacturer has been provided with specifics about the deal

The deal's timeline has yet to be announced, and it is unclear whether BYD will supply Tesla with its new blade-style battery cells or another cell format.