Currently reading: Mercedes-Benz targets 30%-cheaper batteries in affordable EV drive
German brand is targeting energy density of 0.9kWh per litre at Untertürkheim factory's new eCampus

Mercedes-Benz has set a target of reducing the costs of its EV batteries by as much as 30% by increasing their energy density.

The German firm aims to increase the energy density of its batteries to 0.9kWh per litre. The 120kWh battery in its most efficient current EV, the EQS saloon, has an energy density of 0.55kWh per litre.

This new target also goes beyond the 0.8kWh per litre that Mercedes claims to be achieving from lithium ion batteries with a silicon composite anode, developed with American company Sila Nanotechnologies and earmarked for future versions of the electric G-Class.

“The goal is to develop the best possible cells with Mercedes-Benz DNA, as well as to build expertise for their industrialisation,” said Mercedes R&D boss Markus Schäfer.

Mercedes plans to achieve this goal through its new eCampus battery R&D centre, opened today at its Untertürkheim factory in Stuttgart – the heart of its existing engine development operations – as part of an £11.8 billion investment.

It has been created to test and develop different variations of battery cell chemistry, including lithium ion cells with silicon composite anodes, cobalt-free cathode chemistries and solid-state battery technology, providing Mercedes with the sort of in-house competency that it has historically enjoyed with ICE development.

Also on site is an Industrial Cell Lab, which enables the firm to manufacture and test battery cells with differing chemistries on an industrial scale with much shorter lead times. This means tens of thousands of cells can be produced annually.

“We’re seeking to take a leading technological role. The eCampus brings us closer to this. The work being done here will help reduce battery costs by more than 30% in the coming years,” added Schäfer.

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