Where is battery technology?

John Magilke
3 min readMar 17, 2021
Photo by Kumpan Electric on Unsplash

Battery technology is the big hold-up in many industries.

Automobiles, for example.

Makers of EV’s have been, desperately, trying to advance the number of miles a car can travel. Results are what you make of it.

Tesla

Tesla says the latest model “S” will travel 500 miles on a single charge driving 45 mph. Who drives 45 mph? Besides, it’s a $70,000.00 car.

Who buys a $70,000.00 car?

I would argue that it is not the average American consumer.

The Tesla Model 3, which is the mass-produced version of the Tesla, has a distance rating of 215 miles per charge. An optional battery can be purchased, extending the range beyond 300 miles.

Hyundai

In 2018 Hyundai came out with their Kona EV. It boasts a range of 258 miles per charge.

In September of 2020 Hyundai announced a cooperative partnership with SK Innovations Co. SK Innovations is the “first tier” battery supplier for Hyundai Motor Groups Electric Global Modular Platform (E-GMP) that was introduced for the 2021 year.

Hyundai will be an interesting automobile company to watch in the next few years.

Nissan

The Nissan Leaf was the most popular electric car worldwide for many years, however, popularity has waned in the last few years as other EV’s have passed it up in the distance per charge race.

The Leaf plus has a range of 226 miles. The extra miles come with a price of $7000.00 over the base Leaf model which only has a distance range of 149 miles.

The rest of the EV automobiles in this article are less money with more distance.

Chevrolet

The new Chevrolet Bolt will take you further down the road than most of its EV competitors. With a maximum range of 259 miles it beats a lot of the others for the money. So far this is the only car Chevrolet has ventured into the EV auto sector with.

One of the drawbacks to this model is that the fast charge option is just that; an option. Most of the other EV’s listed here come standard with the fast charge option.

As a consumer, I think our best money is spent on a hybrid. There are many advantages. They are less expensive, they are a proven automobile design, they are extremely economical to own, and they are reliable.

I am all for the environment. I could even be called an environmentalist of sorts. However, we can’t go back to horse and buggy! We need automobiles that will function within the upcoming environmental guidelines.

It is this writer’s opinion that until battery technology advances to the point where one can drive an EV for 6–10 hours, without a charge, the market in a country like the USA will be limited.

Of course, the other limitation is the opportunity to charge these automobiles anywhere. There are only a limited number of charging stations around the country and most of them are in populated areas.

An upcoming design breakthrough?

Lithium-metal has been a battery design that holds promise. It has for years. Researchers have tried and failed numerous times with this design. There is a company that has claimed to have a break-through.

QuantumScape is a new battery company on the cutting edge of battery design. VW has invested many millions of dollars in QuantumScape. They have released technical results from a, partially, solid-state battery design.

Some experts remain skeptical that QuantumScape has come close to a break-through. The CEO of QuantumScape has told the press & the science community that he doesn’t care what they think. He knows what he has.

It’s hard to argue with having the largest selling car company in the world behind you. He has obviously shared some information with them that has brought VW “all in” with QuantumScape and their cutting-edge battery design.

By 2025 VW will be using this QuantumScape design in all of the electric vehicles it makes. It will be interesting to see the results.

Until then Hybrids are still our best option.

Originally published at https://www.jgmautopages.com on March 17, 2021.

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John Magilke

Copywriter in the Automotive, Agriculture, & Natural health & wellness industry. Helping clients understand the products they need.