General Motors and Honda in talks to develop solid-state EV batteries

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GM and Honda’s partnership for solid-state storage would deepen their growing relationship. The two companies are already developing hydrogen fuel cells and electric vehicles together.

By : HT automatic office
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Updated:
24 April 2022, 10:28

File photo of an electric vehicle being charged used for representation purposes only. (Bloomberg)

General Motors (GM) and Honda Motor are in talks to expand their electric vehicle partnership to include the development of solid-state EV batteries, which automakers are seeking because they are expected to have more power, lower cost and a reduced risk of fire. The two companies are already developing hydrogen fuel cells and electric vehicles together, while Honda is also a minority investor in GM’s self-driving vehicle startup Cruise.

And now the two companies have discussed joint development of future batteries as they expand their cooperation. However, no decision has been made so far, Shinji Aoyama, Honda’s general manager for electrification, said in an interview with Bloomberg. “At this time, we haven’t decided to do anything more with GM, but we are discussing solid-state and solid-state batteries,” Aoyama said.

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Solid-state EV batteries are being touted as a possible breakthrough in vehicle electrical storage. As lithium-ion batteries used in electric vehicles currently have a flammable liquid electrolyte that conducts the electronics between cathode and anode, the ultimate goal is to replace this liquid with more stable materials such as ceramics. These materials do not ignite and would also reduce pack size. They can also store more energy and lose less power in cold weather.

Honda plans to launch a small manufacturing pilot in 2024 to prove its ability to manufacture the batteries and aims to put them into production in the late 2020s, Aoyama said. Additionally, GM and Honda’s partnership for solid-state storage would deepen their growing relationship. Honda intends to build two midsize SUVs using GM’s Ultium battery in North America. The companies also plan to jointly produce smaller electric vehicles that could sell millions of units a year worldwide.

As for solid-state EV batteries, battery manufacturers have struggled to develop manufacturing of these batteries for cars, but they have been used in small electronic devices like pacemakers.

(with entries from Bloomberg)

Date of first publication: April 24, 2022, 10:27 am IST


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