At present, electric-vehicle batteries are too heavy; there’s little disagreement about that. Their weight needs to be reduced, but by how much is open for debate. A Stellantis executive spoke out this week about that, saying he believes the weight of EV batteries needs to be cut by 50 percent.
Said Stellantis Chief Technology Officer Ned Curic, the auto giant aims to develop batteries that are half the weight of current ones, in order to improve their durability, among other things.
Speaking at the inauguration of the company's Battery Technology Center in Turin, Italy, he said that current batteries were “simply too heavy”, making electric vehicles “incompatible” with sustainability goals.
“What I have in mind and a very hard goal for my team by 2030 is to change the battery weight to at least 50 percent lighter battery.”
He added something that shows just how uncharted is the territory automakers find themselves in when it comes to these new technologies. He acknowledged having “no idea” what the battery of the future would look like.
“We will have to think about completely new materials, new chemistry, new way of replacing this heavy, heavy, heavy materials to something much lighter," said Curcic.
As part of its long-term efforts to improve batteries, Stellantis is investing €40 million (about $58 million CAD) in its Turin battery technology center. This will focus on in-house testing and development of batteries for the Group's future vehicles.
A similar facility for North America is currently under construction in Windsor, Ontario.
As reported by Reuters, Ned Curic also divulged that Stellantis plans to launch later this year a “very affordable” vehicle, one “that just about any member of our societies can afford to buy”. He did not, however, say what price range the vehicle will fall into.