Lucid Motors and Samsung SDI in strategic partnership on next-gen lithium-ion cells
7 December 2016
Samsung SDI and luxury EV startup Lucid Motors have entered a strategic partnership for battery cell supply. Samsung SDI will be a major supplier of lithium-ion cells for Lucid’s first vehicle, an electric executive sedan scheduled to begin production in late 2018.
Samsung SDI and Lucid have collaborated to develop next-generation cylindrical cells that are able to exceed current performance benchmarks in areas such as energy density, power, calendar life and safety. Significantly, this jointly developed cell also achieves breakthrough tolerance to repeated fast charging.
I have been very pleased with the results of the collaboration with Samsung SDI in developing a cell chemistry that meets our stringent standards. Samsung SDI combined their in-house chemistry expertise with massive real-world datasets and state-of-the-art battery models provided by Lucid to develop a cell that is both energy dense and resistant to damage associated with fast-charging.—Albert Liu, PhD, Lucid’s Director of Battery Technology
Lucid has a great deal of EV battery expertise. The company began in 2007 as Atieva, a company focused on developing a battery system for electric vehicles that could be scaled to work across many different vehicle types. Over the next five years, the company developed and integrated a diverse set of battery packs into motorcycles, sedans, vans and buses with an energy ranging from 3 kWh to 150 kWh.
By using modern big-data technology to analyze over 20 million miles of real-world driving data, we improved battery system reliability and performance across all projects. Ultimately, we perfected our core battery system technology and accumulated over 50 patents in the US alone. Many of those original vehicles are still running on the roads without a single safety incident.—Sam Weng, co-founder, COO
In 2014, the company closed a 9-digit funding round with the goal of developing a complete car. The initial result was a custom 900 hp powertrain test vehicle (based on a delivery van) that could accelerate from 0-60 mph in ~ 3 seconds: Edna.
Edna features two electric motors, two sets of power electronics, two gearboxes, one 87 kWh battery pack, plus all of the software required. Edna allows the Lucid team to test various aspects of the powertrain system, including motor control algorithms, regenerative braking behaviors, accelerator pedal feel, and cooling strategies.
Lucid also recently announced it had selected Casa Grande, Arizona, as the location for its factory. Lucid plans to break ground and begin hiring in the first half of 2017. (Earlier post.)