Volkswagen invests $100M in QuantumScape to secure access to solid-state battery technology; new JV; production by 2025
The Volkswagen Group is increasing its stake in solid-state energy company QuantumScape Corporation (earlier post) and forming a new joint venture with the intention of paving the way for the next level of battery power for long-range e-mobility. Volkswagen will invest US$100 million in QuantumScape and will become the innovative enterprise’s largest automotive shareholder. Closing of the transaction is subject to regulatory approval.
Volkswagen Group Research has been collaborating closely with the Stanford spin-off since 2012. Based on the significant technical progress that this cooperation has made, QuantumScape and Volkswagen will work together within a newly formed joint venture with the aim to enable an industrial level of production of solid-state batteries. One of the long-term targets is to establish a production line for solid-state batteries by 2025.
We want to accelerate the commercialization of QuantumScape’s solid-state batteries. And we combine forces to leverage Volkswagen’s experience as a production specialist and QuantumScape technology leadership. Volkswagen is thus taking another step toward a sustainable, zero emission mobility for our customers in the future.
The solid-state battery will mark a turning point for e-mobility. By increasing our stake in QuantumScape and forming the joint venture we strengthen and deepen our strategic cooperation with an innovative partner and secure access to the promising QuantumScape battery technology for Volkswagen.— Dr. Axel Heinrich, Head of VW Group Research
Dr. Heinrich will take a seat on the board of directors of QuantumScape.
Volkswagen is the world’s largest automotive manufacturer and leads the industry in its commitment to electrification of its fleet. We are thrilled to be chosen by Volkswagen to power this transition. We think the higher range, faster charge times, and inherent safety of QuantumScape’s solid-state technology will be a key enabler for the next generation of electrified powertrains.—Jagdeep Singh, CEO of QuantumScape
Founded in 2010, QuantumScape is headquartered in San José, California and holds approximately 200 patents and patent applications for solid-state battery technology.
A solid-state battery could increase the range of the E-Golf to approximately 750 kilometers (466 miles) compared with the present 300 kilometers (186 miles). This battery technology has further advantages over the present lithium-ion technology: higher energy density, enhanced safety, better fast charging capability and—above all—they take up significantly less space.
A solid-state battery of the same size as a current battery package can achieve a range comparable to that of conventional vehicles. While the approach has a lot of promise, advances have been difficult to attain and no other battery supplier has been able to achieve automotive performance. Volkswagen said that it successfully tested QuantumScape early-stage solid-state battery sample cells in Germany running at automotive rates of power.