Auto Manifesto

June 20, 2008

Lithium Ion Knocking On the Door

It looks like lithium ion will be mainstream early next decade. Toyota already has a team looking for post-lithium technology, plug-In vehicles from OEMs will start coming on line around 2010 (Toyota, GM, Nissan, Mitsubishi, Nissan/Renault, etc), and a bunch of players are positioning themselves for when automotive Li-Ion batteries are big time. Note to industry: Make sure to build a recycling infrastructure as well.

Automotive News reported this week Bosch and Samsung have formed a joint venture to make lithium ion batteries for hybrid vehicles. The plan calls for investments of $20 million initially, and an additional $500 m over the next 4 to 5 years. The goal is to eventually capture 30% of the hybrid vehicle battery market.

The location for a plant has not been decided, though the plan is to initially produce battery cells and power packs by 2011.
Samsung presently makes li-ion batteries for computers and consumer electronics.

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