Robert Bosch GmbH is partnering with China’s CATL (Contemporary Amperex Technology Co.) to develop next-generation 48-volt batteries.
Bosch will use the batteries in its mild hybrid powertrain system. CATL will develop and produce high-performance lithium-ion cells for the architecture’s 48-volt battery. The battery harvests energy during braking and powers a small electric motor that assists the piston engine during acceleration.
The mild hybrid is relatively easy to add to a piston-powered car and can lower the vehicle’s fuel consumption by as much as 15%. The new cells from CATL will allow smaller batteries that don’t need their own cooling system.
Bosch predicts about one in five new cars sold worldwide will be equipped mild hybrid technology by 2025. Stefan Hartung, who chairs the company’s Mobility Solutions business, says the CATL collaboration was prompted by Bosch’s desire to understand battery cell technology without making its own devices.
Last year Bosch estimated it would need to invest at least €20 billion ($22.1 billion) to establish its own cell production. A Bosch factory in Wuxi, China, began making first-generation 48-volt batteries late last year.
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