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Impressive new battery technology could greatly increase the range of Tesla EVs.


Impressive new battery technology could greatly increase the range of Tesla EVs

CATL, a Chinese company leading in the supply of EV battery packs worldwide, recently unveiled groundbreaking technology at the Beijing auto show. The new Shenxing Plus EV battery, utilizing a lithium-iron phosphate (LFP) pack with a “proprietary honeycomb material” in the anode, promises a remarkable 621-mile range on a single charge.

This energy density surpasses current LFP batteries on the market, with CATL claiming a full battery will provide a range of 1,000km (approximately 621 miles) when fully charged. Moreover, just 10 minutes of super-fast charging can add up to 600km (373-miles) of range on the Chinese testing cycle, showcasing remarkable efficiency.

Despite no confirmed timeline for the technology’s integration into production vehicles, CATL has held a dominant market share, reaching 36.8% in 2023. The company supplies technology to various major automakers like BMW, Hyundai, Honda, Volkswagen, and notably, Tesla. Reports suggest CATL is developing faster-charging batteries for Tesla’s popular models.

CATL’s chairman, Robin Zeng, was even seen visiting Elon Musk’s hotel room in China recently, hinting at potential collaborations or discussions. The partnership between CATL and Tesla could lead to groundbreaking advancements in electric vehicle technology.

Driving down the cost of electric motoring

(Image credit: CATL)

CATL and its competitor BYD are focused on producing cost-effective, energy-dense battery packs for global vehicle manufacturers. This advancement in battery technology will lead to electric cars and commercial vehicles with significantly improved range and faster charging times. These developments aim to address range anxiety and boost the adoption of electric vehicles over hybrids.

The rapid progress of Chinese companies in EV battery technology is garnering attention globally. US lawmakers have scrutinized collaborations between US and Chinese companies, citing security concerns and striving to maintain competitiveness on the international stage. Analysts acknowledge the significant lead Chinese companies have in mass-producing affordable, high-capacity battery packs compared to other global competitors.

Experts emphasize the crucial role of batteries, supply chains, and critical minerals in advancing electric vehicle technology. Despite uncertainties regarding the availability of CATL’s latest battery technology, speculation suggests Tesla’s Chinese-made Model 3 could be one of the first recipients. The popularity of the Model 3 in China positions it as a prime candidate for integrating cutting-edge battery innovations.

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