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The future belongs to electric driving. That’s why we’re working flat out to improve the component at the heart of any electric vehicle: the drive battery. For this we are combining our know-how in automotive engineering with that of experts in battery technology. Together, we are exploring new paths in lithium-ion technology. Our aim: the volume production of affordable, reliable, high-performance batteries for electric and hybrid cars.
Lithium-ion batteries have proved themselves millions of times over in devices such as cell phones and notebooks, as well as in our own power tools. However, electric and hybrid vehicles place much higher demands on batteries. For example, they have to perform equally well on smooth freeways and potholed tracks, in Arctic temperatures and in tropical heat. Plus, in case of an accident, they must not constitute a hazard. What’s more, high power and energy density is crucial: hybrid vehicles require a lot of energy quickly. Electric cars also have to be able to cover longer distances with one battery charge.
Together with Korean company Samsung SDI, we are working to meet these challenges in the joint venture SB LiMotive. We employ 500 people in research, development, and manufacture at sites in Germany, South Korea, and the United States. Our automotive know-how in power electronics, electric motors, transmissions, and DC/DC converters is being combined with Samsung SDI’s expertise in lithium-ion technology. One satisfied customer is BMW. Its electric “Megacity Vehicle,” unveiled at the 2009 Frankfurt Motor Show, will hit the roads with our battery technology on board.