While the likes of Panasonic and Tesla, partners in Tesla’s enormous Gigafactory, have caught the headlines with regards to electric car battery technology, there may be a challenger on the horizon. LG Chem is seen by many experts as the potential front-runner in years to come, despite the fact that Panasonic currently holds an EV battery market share of 39%. So why might Panasonic’s dominance be at risk? Surely a partnership with Tesla will solidify the company’s position going forward?
One of the main factors with regards to the ongoing increased presence of LG Chem is the fact that the company has not limited itself to just one major electric car manufacturer. Panasonic, in partnership with Tesla, has effectively isolated itself from the rest of the electric car market with Tesla seemingly its preferred choice of partner. When you bear in mind that LG Chem currently has arrangements in place with Chevrolet, Audi, Daimler and an array of lesser-known electric car manufacturers, this perfectly illustrates the situation.
Hybrids and pure electric cars
Those who follow the sector closely also believe that LG Chem has a strong presence in the hybrid market, which is at odds with the Tesla policy of 100% electric cars. Indeed, if the experts are to be believed, LG Chem would only need to secure a deal with Nissan going forward to overtake Panasonic as the leading light in the electric car battery sector.
At this point, it is worth noting, that while electric cars are certainly headline news at the moment, more and more people seem happier to switch to hybrids and then hopefully on to pure electric vehicles in the future. This would negate the ongoing concerns regarding journey capacity which have been a dark cloud over the industry for some time now.
Competition is good
While it looks as though Panasonic could well be overtaken in the electric car battery sector, with LG Chem in prime position, competition is certainly good for the industry. Indeed, it is highly likely that Panasonic will look to extend its electric car client base in the short, medium and longer term although Tesla will remain a key component of its expansion plans.
People often forget that Tesla has already made available an array of technology patents which have the ability to change the horizon of the electric car market in years to come. Elon Musk, the inspirational chief executive officer of Tesla is obviously money orientated but he also has a deep-seated aim to propel the industry itself into the mainstream.
If we look back just a couple of years ago there were major concerns that electric vehicle battery technology was being left in the wake of EV car technology. In some situations we arrived at a scenario where the vehicles were approaching maximum efficiency but the technology relating to battery power was nowhere to be seen. Thankfully, competition is building in the sector with the global market for EV batteries forecast to top $30 billion by 2020. While lithium ion batteries are still the battery of choice at this moment in time there is a lot of interesting work going on behind the scenes. Which new battery technology which will push the battery sector forward?
We await more news with anticipation!