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Published on December 26th, 2014 | by James Ayre


Daimler Expands Manufacturing Capacities for Lithium-Ion Batteries

December 26th, 2014 by  

The German manufacturing powerhouse Daimler AG will be substantially increasing its production capacity with regard to lithium-ion batteries over the next few years — with ~€100 million in new investments via the Deutsche ACCUmotive subsidiary.

As part of this new push, the company is currently constructing a new facility that’s set to be completed by the middle of 2015, in the middle of the Germany Saxon city of Kamenz.

“We are looking forward to continuous growth in the demand for Deutsche ACCUmotive batteries,” stated Frank Blome, Managing Director of Deutsche ACCUmotive, are recent topping out ceremony for the currently-being-constructed facility. The ceremony was also attended by Saxony’s Prime Minister Stanislaw Tillich, and various others in the region’s political field.

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Once this third construction phase is completed, Deutsche ACCUmotive will possess roughly 20,000 m² of production and logistics space — that means that it has around 4 times the space that it had when production began 3–4 years ago.

“The production of battery systems by Deutsche ACCUmotive GmbH in Kamenz will contribute significantly to the growing expertise of the auto state Saxony in the area of electro mobility and battery technology. That is why I am pleased about the three-digit million investments in a company like Deutsche ACCUmotive GmbH here in Kamenz,” the Prime Minister stated while speaking at the event.

“The expansion of the company again shows that Saxony has much to offer as an innovation location. With excellent research close to industry at the technical universities, colleges and research facilities as well as with very well educated specialist manpower. These are the best prerequisites for investments here in Kamenz and in the entire free state of Saxony.”

Given that Deutsche ACCUmotive was created only about five years ago, the Daimler-owned initiative has proved pretty successful so far. To date, the subsidiary has manufactured and delivered over 50,000 lithium-ion batteries.

Image Credit: Daimler AG

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About the Author

James Ayre’s background is predominantly in geopolitics and history, but he has an obsessive interest in pretty much everything. After an early life spent in the Imperial Free City of Dortmund, James followed the river Ruhr to Cofbuokheim, where he attended the University of Astnide. And where he also briefly considered entering the coal mining business. He currently writes for a living, on a broad variety of subjects, ranging from science, to politics, to military history, to renewable energy. You can follow his work on Google+.

  • Bob_Wallace

    If Panasonic (or other company) batteries are really good for thousands of cycles before dropping to 80% capacity we’re going to see EVs staying on the road much longer than have ICEVs. Bodies can be fixed up and painted for modest money. Interiors can be refurbished.

    I don’t see gasmobiles being sent to the crusher because the hood is rusty, but because the engine and transmission are shot.

    A 20 year old EV with decent paint and seat covers is going to be a desirable car for those with limited budgets.

    • CaptD

      BTW: Happy Holidays Bob

      Yes, especially if the body work is composite which will make rust a thing of the past. I think modular body components will allow continual upgrades as owners start keeping their eVehicles in the family for generations instead of just a few years.

      + I saw this image and wanted to share it with all readers:

      • Bob_Wallace

        That is some serious topiary.

        Imagine – Elon wants to finish off ICEVs. Tesla markets an 21st Century “Bug”. A car designed to be inexpensive and easy to repair.

        Bodies don’t get redesigned annually but only when there are significant reasons for changes. That makes it much easier to find a door/fender if needed. And if you keep your Tesla Bug shined up people won’t know if you’re driving a 15 year old or a brand new one.

        Parts are designed for easy replacement. Interiors are easily refurbished. For example, seats can be quickly unbolted and a recovered set bolted in. Headliners snap in with minimal effort.

        We move from average lifespans of 13 years to 30+ years. That would be a significant move toward sustainability.

  • Jouni Valkonen

    To put things in context, some minuscule start-up just invested 5 billion on lithium-ion battery manufacturing…

    • Bob_Wallace

      This is the third (?) big battery factory announcement?

      Tesla/Panasonic and L G Chem announced earlier.

      I wonder if this means car manufacturers are expecting EV sales to increase? Hummmmmmmmmmm……….

      • Jouni Valkonen

        But this investment was only about one hundredth of what what others are doing, so this clearly indicates that Daimler is not serious with electric cars.

        • JamesWimberley

          €100m is small by the standards of Tesla and Nissan, but it’s still serious money. Daimler, like other big traditional carmakers, is hedging its bets. If demand for evs takes off, they will be in position to expand rapidly.

          The investment increases the pressure on the German government to get serious in its turn on electric mobility. At present Germany lags well behind France, the Netherlands and Norway. Following recent positive statements by Angela Merkel, we can hope for non-token policy shifts in 2015.

          • Bob_Wallace

            Here’s something interesting I stumbled on last night…

            “BMW gives the signal of change in the auto industry saying that the moment to move to electric cars is not that far in future.

            The evolution of electricity storage technologies will ensure the appearance of more efficient batteries and the launch of electric cars with ranges comparable to that of fossil fuel cars. BMW officials think that moment will soon be upon us.

            One of the core people in BMW’s organization chart, Ian Robertson, said that electric cars that run on hydrogen fuel cells may be the solution for the future of the automotive industry. But this is very unlikely to happen because the technologies that will enable more efficient energy storage in “normal” batteries will evolve and will radically transform ranges and load times of conventional electric cars.

            “We’ve said we’ll continue to invest in hydrogen and that will result in a small number of production test vehicles being made to prove the technology works. The real issues lie not around what we can do, though, but whether the infrastructure can be built up to supply hydrogen in the marketplace cost-effectively.” said Robertson arguing that the current lithium-ion batteries will slowly be replaced by more efficient technology.

            “Advances in lithium ion technology are set to be followed by a switch to lithium air and then solid-state batteries. These advances over the next 10 years could see charging time and range worries disappear,” Robertson thinks.


          • Doug Cutler

            Excellent. More fuel to fire the anticipation of the EV tipping point. One thing I don’t get though:

            “Advances in lithium ion technology are set to be followed by a switch to lithium air and then solid-state batteries”

            From everything I understand that’s the wrong way round; solid-state is at least 10 years ahead of lithium-air.

          • Bob_Wallace

            I always figure that manufacturers know more about what is likely to happen than we mere mortals. They are going to be approached by other companies who have stuff in the works, can sign non-disclosure agreement, and get look inside the labs and testing facilities.

          • Doug Cutler

            Perhaps I’m relying too heavily on Toyota talk which projects first solid-state then lithium-air:

            “Hideki Iba from Toyota’s Battery Research Division and Dr. Chihiro Yada from Toyota Motor Europe’s Advanced Technology group noted that Li-air batteries—assuming the attendant issues are resolved—may not be commercialized until FY 2030.”


            In fact, lithium-air concept has been around for decades with many others in hot pursuit. Some say lithium-air by 2020. I hope they are right. Energy densities could be far superior to even solid state lithium.

      • Matt

        That or they think there are other markets for a lot more batteries than we use now. Wink wink, nod.

    • Steve Grinwis

      To put this in context, Tesla only just bought it’s first battery factory. Daimler has owned one for five years. 🙂

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