Bosch, Mitsubishi and GS Yuasa have agreed to work together to develop lithium-ion (li-ion) batteries. The companies plan to use advanced cell management and progress in electrochemistry and materials to significantly increase energy content. This will reduce weight and space requirements, and increase the range of electric vehicles.
The three companies intend to set up a joint venture for joint research and development, and to support their mother companies in sales and marketing activities. Operations are planned to start in the beginning of 2014. The headquarters will be Stuttgart/Germany.
The establishment of the joint venture is subject to approval by the antitrust authorities.
Bosch will hold a 50 percent stake in the joint venture, with GS Yuasa and Mitsubishi each holding 25 percent. The composition of the board of management and supervisory board will reflect these shareholdings, the companies say.
Bosch — which specializes in the monitoring and control of cells and complete battery systems, as well as in integrating them into vehicles — says it will contribute its know-how in production processes and quality management relating to the large-scale series production of complex products. In addition, the company will support these joint activities with its entire portfolio of components for electromobility.
GS Yuasa, a manufacturer of automotive and non-automotive lithium-ion battery cells, will contribute its experience in manufacturing lithium-ion cells whose high density makes for a longer range, as well as its expertise in materials systems and electrochemistry.
GS Yuasa was the battery supplier for Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner, which was grounded in a number of countries earlier this year following a battery-related fire risk.
Mitsubishi says it will apply its strengths in building global value chains, covering natural resources, material, sales and take advantage of their synergy to advance this business.
The global market for lithium-ion batteries in light duty vehicles will grow from $1.6 billion in 2012 to almost $22 billion in 2020, according to a Pike Research report published last month.