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Tesla, Panasonic to bring battery plant online sooner

OSAKA -- A battery plant that Tesla Motors is building with Panasonic in the U.S. state of Nevada will begin operations in 2016, earlier than initially planned, a Tesla official said here Friday.

     The American electric-car manufacturer apparently wants to secure a supply of batteries fast on expectations of strong demand for a lower-priced vehicle due out as early as 2017.

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