The German manufacturer is already preparing the sixth generation of lithium-ion batteries, which promise greater autonomy and 30% faster charging. And that is, according to BMW battery gurus, the maximum limit this type of technology can reach.
We have been commenting for some time that lithium batteries have a monopoly in the current market, but it is also necessary to discover technology that Performance, Safety and Durability, Not surprisingly, lithium chemistry batteries have several limitations that hinder the entry of electric cars into global mobile fleets.
On the one hand, the lithium battery They are quite expensive and require significant raw materials that do not warrant a long-term strategy. On the other hand, their security is not the best. And not just that, there are those who believe that they no longer have room for improvement in terms of performance.
Gen6 batteries, the extremes of lithium chemistry
In late November, BMW introduced the sixth generation of lithium batteries, which it expects to introduce in its Street models in 2025. This is an important moment for the German brand, because with these batteries it intends to offer Model capable of reaching 1000 kilometers of autonomy With 30% less recharge time.
However, BMW’s director of energy, performance and life for the Gen6 battery believes that this technology can reach its maximum. And so, the time has come to bet on other chemicals with a bigger margin of growth.
“From a power density perspective, I would say we are dealing with the optimum chemistry of lithium-ion cells in an industrial application” For the larger markets, Simon Erhard said in statements collected by InsideDevs.com.
“I think it’s peaked”reiterates Erhard, who then points to solid-state batteries as the next big development in battery life. A technology BMW is already investigating cell manufacturing capability center Recently opened in Munich.
However, for solid state battery It is still several years away from reaching the market. Meanwhile, large manufacturers such as CATL and BYD are finalizing the development of sodium batteries, which offer slightly less performance than lithium batteries, but are more durable and cheaper.
Lithium batteries will remain in the market for many years
Solid-state batteries have been threatening to reach the automotive market for a few years, but so far it hasn’t materialized. According to Erhard, this is partly because the industry has focused on developing traditional lithium batteries, but that is already changing.
Still, a reprieve from existing batteries is still a few years away. “Assuming that in about 10 years, all batteries will be solid state”predicts Erhard. “But today, and let’s say within the next three to five to eight years, we will continue to rely on lithium-ion battery technology. And then, let’s say that by 2030, from our perspective, there will be an operational solid-state battery “
But whether that translates to some sort of demo prototype or mass production isn’t clear at this point, Erhard admits. “It will take time for solid state to be industrialized and ready for a mass market”He concluded.