All of Solid Power’s 22-class 20Ah lithium metal cells are compared to the company’s first 10-class 2Ah cells.
DETROIT – Ford Motor is increasing its investment in Solid Power, an EV battery starter, in hopes of starting to incorporate a new generation of batteries into electric vehicles by the end of the decade.
Ford, which initially invested in the company in 2019, is leading a $ 130 million round of funding in Solid Power, with venture capital firm BMW and Venture Volta Energy Technologies, the company announced on Monday.
Solid Power makes so-called solid-state batteries, which do not use the liquid electrolyte found in the common lithium-ion batteries used to power most electric vehicles today. Batteries can be lighter and more energy dense, offering more range at a lower cost. But they are more expensive than lithium-ion batteries today and are in the early stages of development.
Under the new deal, Ford and BMW will receive solid Power automotive-compatible battery cells for testing and integrate them into future vehicles next year.The Series B round investment will help the company expand its capabilities and position. In-house production, Solid Power CEO Doug Campbell said at the launch.
Ford’s chief product and operating officer, Hau Thai-Tang, said the automaker believes the industry will start shifting from lithium-ion batteries to solid-state in the next decade. He declined to disclose all of Ford’s investment in solid-state batteries, but said it was “significantly smaller” compared to lithium-ion at the moment.
“We think it is true that by the end of the decade there is a good chance that this will be something that we can use in production,” he told CNBC during an interview.
BMW said it also expects a solid-state battery in EV production by the end of the decade, a company spokesperson expecting to have a demonstration vehicle using the technology before 2025.
The investment announcement comes less than a week after Ford said it would invest $ 185 million in a new battery lab to advance its own production of battery cells for electric vehicles. In addition to a plan to put $ 22 billion into auto power generation from 2016 to 2025.
Ford’s new plant will not be a full-fledged battery cell factory like Tesla has. General Motors recently announced a $ 4.6 billion investment in two U.S. battery cell manufacturing plants with LG Energy Solution.