Of all the electric vehicles on the market, only Tesla’s Model S and Model X use small, cylindrical, 18650 battery cells (which Tesla gets from Panasonic). However, Chinese automaker JAC Motors is breaking away from the mold, and Samsung SDI (which is a juggernaut in the battery storage world) is showing that it will match Panasonic’s offering and sell 18650 battery cells to automakers as well, beginning with JAC Motors. No, we have no idea what the price is, but I’d venture to guess it’s close to Panasonic’s price. Here’s more on the news, via EV Obsession. —Zach Shahan
Samsung SDI Agrees To Supply JAC Motors With Cylindrical EV Batteries
Samsung SDI will reportedly supply JAC Motors with the batteries used in the electric iEV6S SUV — recently unveiled at the 2015 Guangzhou International Auto Parts & Accessories Exhibition.
As the JAC Motors iEV6S will be the first electric SUV in China to possess a range of over 250 kilometers per charge, the deal with Samsung SDI shouldn’t be too surprising — there are, after all, only so many suppliers for such needs.
The new electric SUV will reportedly make use of around 3,000 of Samsung SDI’s high-performance 18650 battery cells. Supply is set to begin next year, and will be based out of the Cheonan Plant in Korea, and also out of the Tianjin Plant in China (reportedly).
A recent press release provides more:
Additionally, JAC Motors signed an MOU with Samsung SDI for the supply of 50 million battery cells next year alone. The two companies promised to collaborate as tactical partners to exchange technology and establish a solid supplier relationship.
Samsung SDI’s 18650 battery is a cylindrical cell about the size of an index finger. Despite its small size, it is powerful with an energy capacity of around 3,000 mAh. Until recently, it had been mostly used on small IT devices or power tools such as laptops, cordless drills, electric screwdrivers, e-bikes, and etc. Among global electric vehicles, Tesla has been the only brand to use 18650 batteries.
Samsung SDI CEO Nam-Seong Cho stated: “China’s electric vehicle market is rapidly growing and since it is crucial to maintain our position as a leading manufacturer, we are supplying cylindrical 18650 batteries along with the existing squared ones. We will aggressively respond to the demands of Chinese customers and target from various angles.”