BAIC EX3 has the most energy dense battery
The Chinese electric car BAIC EX3 was recently upgraded and is now powered by a NCM battery made by Guoxuan with an energy density of 200 Wh/kg. This is the most energy dense battery pack to power a mass produced electric car.
Guoxuan is already known to produce the most energy dense cobalt-free LFP (LiFePO4) batteries, now this Chinese battery cell maker – partly owned by Volkswagen – proves that it can also make extremely energy dense NCM batteries.
Since its launch, this electric car – that resembles a Chevrolet Bolt EV – already had three editions, 2019, 2020 and now 2021. While the price of the new 2021 edition isn’t known yet, the previous 2020 edition had a starting price of 119.900 yuan (15.439 euros).
Let’s see some details of the BAIC EX3.
BAIC EX3 (BJ7000USD8-BEV)
- Length: 4.200 mm
- Width: 1.780 mm
- Height: 1.638 mm
- Gross weight: 1.940 kg
- Curb weight: 1.540 kg
- Maximum speed: 150 km/h
- Range: 470 km (NEDC)
- Energy density of battery: 200,22 Wh/kg
- Consumption: 13,6 kWh/100 km (NEDC)
- Battery type: ternary lithium ion battery (NCM)
- Motor type: permanent magnet synchronous motor
- Motor peak power: 120 kW and 240 N.m of torque
- Capacity: 63,3 kWh
- Weight: 315 kg
- Energy density: 200,22 Wh/kg
- Maker: Guoxuan
- Type: NCM
For comparison, the NCM 712 battery made by LG Chem that powers the new Renault ZOE has a total capacity of 55 kWh and weighs 326 kg.
A lighter battery not only contributes to make electric cars more efficient, but also contributes to make them cheaper, since fewer raw materials were used in production.
Anyway, how does this NCM battery pack compares to the LFP technology produced by Guoxuan?
Guoxuan’s LFP battery cell evolution
- 2009: 95 Wh/kg
- 2015: 140 Wh/kg
- 2019: 190 Wh/kg
- 2020: 212 Wh/kg (191 Wh/kg at pack level with JTM)
- 2021: 230 Wh/kg (207 Wh/kg at pack level with JTM)
- 2022: 260 Wh/kg (234 Wh/kg at pack level with JTM)
As you can see, Guoxuan also expects to surpass the 200 Wh/kg mark at the pack level with its cobalt-free LFP battery cells already this year, by using extremely compact and simple cell modules (JTM technology).
In China the number of new electric vehicles introduced with LFP batteries is rising extremely fast.
MIIT approved 202 #NEV models for sales in Feb.
PV: 50#LFP: 44%#NMC: 54%#LMO: 1%#FCEV: 1%#CATL led OEM with 12 models, #Guoxuan followed with 3.
— Moneyball (@DKurac) March 15, 2021
While NCM battery cells are more energy dense, at the battery pack level they lose this advantage by requiring more hardware to protect them, since they are inherently less safe than LFP cells. The extra protection hardware not only adds more weight, it also increases costs.
Any plans for an european factory by Guoxuan?
Not that I’m aware of.
Impressive. So the most advanced battery is in a 15.000€ car. This is unexpected and disruptive. Hat off.
And so Guoxuan success is Volkswagen’s. Just yesterday copied all the Tesla strategy for car and trucks (Scania). From 2023 onwards, they go LFP + high manganese for cars, NCM for sport cars and trucks (my guess as it wasn´t confirmed), cell to pack, car structure-battery integration, vertical integration of cell R&D and production with 3 labs and 6 cell factories.
What type of cooling system does it have?
It isn’t worth much if it doesn’t have a proper cooling system which ensures longevity.
The battery can also be warm in winter and cool in summer
Equipped with advanced all-climate battery temperature control technology, through the battery management system to monitor and adjust the battery, battery cell and coolant temperature at all times, so that the power battery can maintain a “constant body temperature” like a human when working, ensuring a variety of climates Under the conditions, the charging is faster, the battery is more sufficient, and the discharge is safer.
* Actual performance indicators: “7℃ can also achieve rapid charging from 10% to 90% in 70 minutes.
* In hot weather, the battery temperature can be controlled within 45°C, making the battery safer.”
Hope those 70 minutes from 10 to 90% are majorly on the upper 80-90%…. otherwise DC charging is anything but fast…. looks like my 18′ Leaf 40kwh with rapidgate 😛
One thing I don’t get is why do they produce the EX3 with NCM batteries at all, if Guoxuan already has LFP batteries that are as dense in energy? According to what you regularly write in here, NCM have several issues (heating management, etc) that LFP don’t have, they cost more, and the Chinese government don’t like them anymore. So why not making the EX3 with LFP only?
Maybe low availability of LFP from Guoxan at the moment?! or they can offer both sollutions in the future…
Just guessing though…
Until recently most of the LFP battery cell production was to supply electric buses. Battery cell makers now have to adapt production lines and increase production to also supply passenger electric cars, this takes time.
Moreover, the latest energy dense LFP battery cells made by Guoxuan use new silicon anodes, they probably need more testing before mass production.
I think that by next year, most of new electric vehicles made in China will have LFP batteries. NCM will probably evolve to safer but equally energy dense NCMA chemistry and become a option for premium electric cars.
Thanks for your reply, always interesting.
Dimensions pretty much the same as upcoming MeganE Vision but 120kg less weight. Could the difference be due to better energy density or something else? De Meo claims E Vision has the flattest battery there is so it should be lighter than the one from Zoe.
Possibliy but not necessarily… There’s volumetric power ratio and weight power ratio… they are not necessarly linked…
I agree with that. It would be nice if manufacturers communicated more data on battery systems. For example, engine in ICE cars weights quiet a lot but on the other hand electric motor is just few 10 kilos. So EV should have weight advantage here which it looses because of heavy battery. It also does not need such a complicated transmission and clutch. So my guess is ICE is 100kg heavier to EV without a battery. So the difference between new 60kWh EV and similar ICE should be 200 to 250kg and not more. But in reality it is more and this is a bit strange. Chassis should not be heavier for EVs.
Hey Pedro, I wonder if you are planning to cover the news from the VW Power Day earlier this week. I would especially love to hear your thoughts on why they chose prismatic cells for their unified cell approach.
Prismatic battery cells have the advantage of allowing to assemble simpler and compact battery packs without modules. I think it’s a wise decision.
The VW Power Day presentation video has almost 2 hours. I’ll probably watch it during the weekend and if I find something interesting to discuss I’ll write an article.
Great to see this evolution. 315 kg for 63,3 kWh is remarkable.
Nice car! I really hope this car can be sold in EU soon, at reasonable price. Who could open such deal?
2 important articles for you. Prismatic LFP seems to be made for each other with more volume in prism and more safety in LFP.
Prismatic battery wins over pouch
LFP battery consolidates
“LFP-battery China-made sedan comprised 46% of all Model 3 sales in January and a remarkable 32% of the battery capacity in all LFP-equipped cars globally. This trend, Adamas’ data showed, boosted LFP’s overall share in the global battery market in terms of capacity to 18.5% in January 2021. “