Mercedes-Benz partners with CATL to develop long-range electric vehicle batteries

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Mercedes-Benz and Contemporary Amperex Technology (CATL) have entered the next stage of their strategic partnership and will create cutting-edge battery technology in support of the high-volume electrification of the Mercedes-Benz model portfolio.

Mercedes is accelerating its “Electric First” strategy with advanced, CO2-neutrally produced battery cells, modules and systems supplied by CATL, a technology leader in lithium-ion batteries. The agreement covers the full range of battery technologies, from cells across modules for Mercedes-Benz Cars to entire battery systems for Mercedes-Benz Vans in promising innovative technology configurations. This also includes the CATL cell-to-pack (CTP) design, which eliminates conventional modules and integrates the cells directly into the battery.

Through its strategic partnership with CATL, Mercedes-Benz will advance its development of current and future lithium-ion batteries. The two partners have already started working on future battery generations to be introduced in a number of vehicles within the next few years. The clear goal is to shorten development cycles, significantly increase the ranges of future batteries through advances in energy density and reduce charging times. In order to make electrification even more attractive for customers in the luxury segment, the goals set are ambitious: With the EQS luxury sedan, which will be delivered to customers next year, the development goal is a long-distance range of more than 700 km (WLTP range) and a doubling of the charging speed compared to current models. The Mercedes-Benz EQS will also be equipped with CATL cell modules.

“We intend to lead in battery technologies, so we are now combining our own research and development expertise with bold partners. We will integrate cutting-edge battery systems to create luxury cars with outstanding range, charging speed, safety and sustainability. Working with CATL will see us accelerate our transformation towards carbon-neutrality,” said Markus Schäfer, member of the board of management of Daimler AG and Mercedes-Benz AG, responsible for Daimler Group Research and Mercedes-Benz Cars COO. “CATL will be a major supplier securing capacity for the next generations of our EQ products in the years to come.”

With the car maker’s Ambition2039 goal, Mercedes-Benz is pursuing the long-term vision of a climate-neutral new passenger car fleet and is actively driving the transformation to CO2-neutrality. In order to minimize the carbon footprint of current and future vehicle generations, the partners have agreed to the carbon-neutral production of battery products. To enable this, CATL will use electricity from renewable energy sources, such as wind, solar and hydropower for its production. At the beginning of 2020, Mercedes-Benz and CATL had already launched a joint pilot project using blockchain technology to create transparency on the emissions of climate-damaging gases and the proportion of secondary material along the battery cell supply chain. The next step is to significantly reduce the reliance on raw material mining through the recycling of end-of-life batteries.

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