QuantumScape, a battery tech company, has said that you will soon be able to buy an Audi or Volkswagen with its batteries in as soon as 2024. It is said it will be a vehicle that can go nearly 400 miles on a single charge, then recharge in 15mins.
QuantumScape has invested in its ‘QS campus’ which will include their pilot production line and a large space dedicated to manufacturing. The long-term lease that was signed for this building confirms QuantumScape’s assurance that it will be the first company to market solid-state batteries for electric vehicles.
This battery capability would put solid-state EV’s at a huge advantage over their lithium-ion battery competitors. Solid-state batteries promise prolonged life, faster charge times, safer chemistry but, as most issues with batteries, it is hard to produce them on the mass scale they are needed.
Quantumscape are racing against many battery-focused companies to produce a solution that battery tech needs. They have said they are able to deliver prototype battery cells to Volkswagen as soon as this year. By the end of 2023, it plans to build a pre-production line and deliver ASSBs to Volkswagen for integration in a test car scheduled for 2024 or 2025.
QuantumScape says its EV battery will take 15 minutes to go from 10 to 80 percent. That’s significantly less time than it takes most EVs today, but still longer than the five to seven minutes it takes to refill a conventional vehicle at the pump.
Although their timeline is ambitious, SES, a battery maker in Singapore also says that it is on track to offer an alternative lithium-metal battery in 2025. Furthermore, European company Stora Enso, are said to be developing an alternative battery made from the carbon in trees.
The potential that solid-state batteries hold for the future of EV’s has encouraged many automakers to make billion-dollar investments into the industry. Toyota has announced a $13.6 billion investment in an in-house battery development and production program, that includes solid state batteries.
Nissan also says that it will have its own version of the solid-state battery by 2028. As the road towards full electrification continues, the battery powered race continues, however, it is hard to say when we will see that the technology is available to consumers.