Chinese companies compete to provide batteries for Hyundai electric vehicles

By Lim Chang-won Posted : December 27, 2019, 09:38 Updated : December 27, 2019, 09:38

[Courtesy of Hyundai Motor]

SEOUL -- A second bid is under way for batteries to be used by South Korea's Hyundai auto group for entry-level electric vehicles that will be produced from 2022 under a dualized strategy to apply variable battery capacity. The race has drawn some 10 companies, including Chinese battery makers with high price competitiveness, according to related industry officials.

In the first bid, SK Innovation has been selected to provide batteries for the first batch of about 500,000 premium crossover utility vehicles installed with E-GMP (Electric-Global Modular Platform that can run up to 500 kilometers (310 miles) on a single charge. Production of Hyundai's first electric model based on E-GMP carrying an 800-volt battery will begin in the first quarter of 2021.

The second bid is for E-GMP-based diffusion models using a 400-volt charging system. Hyundai plans to produce some 1.16 million units for up to eight years from 2022. "We are going to maximize mileage and secure optimal performance through E-GMP, which can apply variable battery capacity according to vehicle class," said a Hyundai group official.

The production of electric vehicles installed with E-GMP signals the start of Hyundai's full-fledged campaign to replace combustion engines gradually with hydrogen fuel cells and premium electric batteries. Group affiliates are developing related technologies and components. In August, Hyundai Mobis broke ground for a new plant in Ulsan to manufacture components for electric vehicles installed with E-GMP.

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