LG Chem Will Have 200-Mile Range Battery By 2016

General Motor representatives have said on different occasions GM could have a 200-mile range battery electric car as soon as 2016, but have been short on details beyond that.

Yesterday it was reported LG Chem says it will be able to supply a 200-mile-range EV battery by 2016, said at least one automaker will get it, but did not say which one(s) will.

General Motors uses LG Chem cells for its Chevy Volt, Cadillac ELR, and exported Volt/Ampera siblings.

The connection is obvious, and seems intuitive enough that GM is in line to get the Korean battery company’s next battery, but questions remain.

LG Chem also happens to supply batteries to other automakers, including Ford, Hyundai, Kia, Volvo, and Renault. Could one or more of these get the LG Chem battery, and GM not get it?

If somehow GM is not the one to get it, where will its next battery come from?

Will it also add this potentially more energy dense battery into the next Volt, or other plug-in extended-range cars?

GM has shown itself a bit reserved in pushing the EV agenda, but to skeptics, it has said not to count it out. It has also tasked a team of watchers to track Tesla which also is planning a 200-mile car maybe by 2016 or 2017, and has said Tesla will not leave it behind when the EV race heats up later.

To be clear also, a “200-mile-range” battery is possible today with existing technology, just look at Tesla Model S or Roadster if you want proof of that.

What’s not being spelled out is what is the specific chemistry, packaging, and energy density that may be represented by this headline-grabbing 200-mile range LG Chem battery in the works.

Other times that GM has suggested Tesla will not leave it in the dust include March 2013 when former CEO Dan Akerson told a Houston conference as much, and September 2013 when GM’s Vice President of Global Product Development Doug Parks did also.

Edmunds