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Tesla's electric motor shift to spur demand for rare earth neodymium

LONDON (Reuters) - Tesla's shift to a magnetic motor using neodymium in its Model 3 Long Range car adds to pressure on already strained supplies of a rare earth metal that had for years been shunned because of an export ban by top producer China. But it is the switch to neodymium by Tesla, an auto maker that has staked its future solely on the electric vehicle, that is showing the way the industry is moving and the direction of demand for the rare earth metal. China is really the main producer, no one else has invested as much in rare earths," a rare earth trader said. China has invested heavily in the rare earth metals process but its crackdown on mining, smelting and other polluting industries is forecast to slow supply.

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