Stellantis eyes cheaper EVs with sodium ion battery partnership Car News

Stellantis has taken a step towards drastically reducing the price of its future electric cars by partnering with a company that produces sodium ion batteries.

Sodium ion has been touted by several manufacturers as a more cost-effective battery chemistry that could pave the way for much cheaper EVs in the near future.

For example, Dacia boss Denis Le Vot has said the next-generation electric Sandero could use the technology and Chinese giant BYD recently signed a $1.2 billion contract to build the world’s largest sodium battery factory in Xuzhou, with an eye on specifically powering small cars and scooters.

Stellantis has invested in Amiens-based Tiamat, a spin-off of the French National Centre for Scientific Research, which is claimed to be the first company in the world to commercialise a sodium ion battery.

Tiamat will use the revenue generated in its latest funding round, which included Stellantis’s undisclosed investment, to build a new sodium ion battery factory in France.

This new factory will first build batteries for power tools and energy storage devices but will scale up to eventually produce “second-generation” cells for battery-electric cars. No timeframe has been given.

Stellantis said the implications of its new partnership will be significant for its future vehicles: “Sodium ion technology offers a lower cost per kilowatt-hour and is free of lithium and cobalt. Abundantly available sodium offers benefits in increased sustainability and material sovereignty.”

The multinational giant has previously vocalised a plan to cut battery weight in its EVs by 50% by introducing new lightweight technologies and more efficient cell packaging.

It also recently invested in American company Lytten, which is developing lithium-sulphur batteries.

Tiamat has said sodium ion is a “stable chemistry for simple, safe, fast and performing solutions”.

It’s aiming to achieve charging times of just five minutes and claims its batteries – with an impressive power density of 2-5kW per kilogram – retain up to 80% capacity after 5000 charge cycles.

Ned Curic, chief engineering and technology officer at Stellantis, said: “Exploring new options for more sustainable and affordable batteries that use widely available raw materials is a key part of our ambitions of the Dare Forward 2030 strategic plan that will see us reach carbon net-zero by 2038.

“Our customers are asking for emissions-free vehicles that offer a combination of robust driving range, performance and affordability. This is our North Star, as Stellantis and its partners work today to develop ground-breaking technologies for the future.”


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This notice was published: 2024-01-12 10:38:33

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