Mercedes-Benz and Contemporary Amperex Technology (CATL) are collaborating to create new battery technology for the high-volume electrification of Mercedes vehicles. The carmaker is accelerating its Electric First strategy, and plans to use carbon-neutral battery cells, modules and systems supplied by CATL.
The agreement covers the full range of battery technologies, from cells to modules for passenger cars to entire battery systems for vans. This also includes the CATL cell-to-pack (CTP) design, which eliminates conventional modules and integrates the cells directly into the battery.
”We intend to lead in battery technologies, so we are now combining our own research and development expertise with bold partners,” said Mercedes COO Markus Schäfer. “We will integrate cutting-edge battery systems to create luxury cars with outstanding range, charging speed, safety and sustainability. Working with CATL will see us accelerate our transformation towards carbon neutrality. CATL will be a major supplier securing capacity for the next generations of our EQ products in the years to come.”
The partners have already started working on future battery generations to be introduced in a number of vehicles within the next few years. The goals are to shorten development cycles and significantly increase the range of future batteries through advances in energy density and reduced charging times. In order to make electrification even more attractive for customers in the luxury segment, the objectives set are ambitious: with the EQS luxury sedan, which will be delivered to customers next year, the development goal is a range of more than 700 km and a doubling of charging speed compared to current models.
In order to minimize the carbon footprint of current and future vehicle generations, the partners have agreed to the carbon-neutral production of battery products. To enable this, CATL will use electricity from renewable energy sources, such as wind, solar and hydropower, for its production. At the beginning of 2020, Mercedes-Benz and CATL launched a joint pilot project using blockchain technology to create transparency on the emissions of climate-damaging gases and the proportion of secondary material along the battery cell supply chain. The next step is to significantly reduce the reliance on raw material mining through the recycling of end-of-life batteries.