Battery Manufacturer Market Share

2 years ago by Inside EVs Staff 38

battery share

Battery Manufacturer Market Share

Courtesy of Evans Electric, here’s a simple look at the market share of the world’s leading lithium-ion automotive battery manufacturers.

Though Panasonic leads in market share (thanks almost entirely to its deals with Tesla), AESC (exclusive to Nissan) isn’t too far behind.

What’s surprising is that LG Chem is widely considered the world’s leader on the battery technology front, yet it only holds 12.9% of the market. That will surely change soon, as LG Chem has signed some fairly major deals recently, including a supply deal for the Chevrolet Bolt.

Down at the bottom of the leader board is Samsung SDI. Most of its 4.6% comes from supplying batteries for the BMW i3.

We do believe that BYD was overlooked (or these are several month trailing numbers) and that it would place perhaps above LG Chem on this Top 4 list had it been included.

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38 responses to "Battery Manufacturer Market Share"

  1. kdawg says:

    LG also supplies the cells to Ford. I thought Nissan was going to switch to LG? Was it just Renault?

    1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

      Nissan has said both its Japan and Tennessee battery plants will continue to make batteries for the Leaf. As I have pointed out several times, it looks like Nissan licensed LG Chem’s tech for use in its battery factories. Since Nissan and Renault are partners, this shouldn’t have been a big surprise, and in fact I speculated as much in several posts commenting here at InsideEVs.

      The unanswered question is Nissan’s battery plant in the UK. No word on that, so maybe Nissan will be buying some batteries from LG Chem. And yes, there were reports that LG will be supplying Nissan from a factory in the USA, altho just what percentage of that supply will appear in Leafs, if any, is anybody’s guess.

  2. ggpa says:

    Does anybody know more about the LG cells that will be used in all these new deals that were recently signed?

    I am curious how the energy density compares with current cells.

    If the technology is basically the same as the current LG cells, then the Bolt will essentially be a huge battery with wheels.

    1. Roy_H says:

      I don’t know the details, but the Volt uses LG cells too (could be a different formula) and the new 2016 Volt has a smaller battery pack with more range. They are continuously working on improving the energy density. No great break-throughs but about 5% a year, so Volt battery probably about 15% better than original.

    2. IQ130 says:

      The energy density of the LG Chem cells for the Bolt have been improved by around 50% in comparison with the cells for the first Volt. The price is also 50% lower. See the video between minute 4 and 5.

      1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

        Actually, the LG Chem rep in that video says there has been a 40-50% improvement in battery energy density since the Volt was first released, which was at the end of 2010. If ED typically increases at a rate of 7.5% per year, then over 5 years we would expect a 33.5% improvement, even without any breakthru in battery tech from LG Chem.

        Yes, LG Chem’s new lower cost per kWh, and higher ED, do represent an improvement faster than the norm, a jump so to speak rather than the usual year-on-year gradual improvement. But the jump in ED is probably only a modest one, despite many excited posts from those less informed about lithium ion battery tech. The jump down in price may well be more significant.

        1. AlphaEdge says:

          > “If ED typically increases at a rate of 7.5% per year”

          I don’t know how people can come up with these automatic conclusions. It’s not scientific. More like wishful thinking.

          1. Speculawyer says:

            It is not scientific but it may be a useful “rule of thumb”. The unscientific “Moore’s law” (which really wasn’t a law) held true for a pretty long time.

            At least 7.5% is not unreasonably large (although a bit more aggressive than I would guess) . . . some people seem to expect miracles.

          2. Priusmaniac says:

            If the average over the past years is 7,5 %, it would be quiet reasonable to expect a similar rate in the coming years. Of course as energy increase, the going get tougher, but the number of labs is increasing as well, with more people, more means and money, so the result is likely to be indeed a linear rate of about 7 to 8 %. Further down the road, batteries are going to be limited by the theoretical limits of chemistry so capacitor are likely to surpass them somehow sometime in the long term future. Although, we might have something completely different as well. One of my personal favorite is the light box battery, where light is stored between totally reflective mirrors. As light keeps on accumulating in the box, the energy density level becomes enormous up to the point of going way beyond chemical batteries. That kind of device could then discharge in a 200 second timeframe a huge photonic pressure to directly propel a photonic rocket into space with no fossil fuel at all. We are not there yet, but that is the kind of tech dreams I wake up with in the morning and I just love it since it might not be 100% impossible. Pushing that slight possible impossible is what brought us to the technology devices we have today, from stream engines, to rockets, from black powder to nuclear bombs, from Kitty Hawk to the Moon.

            1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

              Theoretically, it should be possible to improve the chemical energy density of batteries to the equivalent of diesel, and that is some orders of magnitude of improvement! Practically, we’ll likely never reach that point, but there’s no reason to think basic physical limits will be reached soon.

              I dunno about storing light bounced between two mirrors; seems like that would dissipate fairly rapidly, altho the loss over distance in fiber optic cables is extremely low.

              Anyway, some form of energy storage other than chemical energy is certainly possible. Nuclear-electric “batteries” have been in the news not so long ago, and that would certainly blow the lid off energy density!

              http://www.extremetech.com/extreme/190555-this-nuclear-battery-could-power-your-smartphone-forever-as-long-as-you-dont-value-your-life-or-sperm-count-too-highly

              1. Priusmaniac says:

                On a nuclear route Aneutronic fusion would be a possible safer alternative, if it can be done.
                http://revolution-green.com/aneutronic-fusion/

          3. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

            AlphaEdge said:

            “[Pushmi-Pullyu said:] If ED typically increases at a rate of 7.5% per year [unquote]

            “I don’t know how people can come up with these automatic conclusions. It’s not scientific. More like wishful thinking.”

            It’s neither a scientific law nor wishful thinking. It’s an observation of an ongoing trend, like Moore’s Law in computer tech.

            Some people, including Elon Musk, have cited an 8% or even 9% improvement per year. I chose to cite the slightly more conservative figure of 7.5%, which I’ve seen widely quoted. Perhaps the improvement in energy density has accelerated slightly in the past 2-3 years, even aside from LG Chem’s breakthru.

        2. Rolf says:

          P-P said “7,5% improvement per year gives 33.5% after 5 years”. This is mathematically wrong: it gives 44.5% improvement. Just take 1.075 to the fifth power and you will see.

          1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

            We’re both wrong; 1.00 x 1.075, five times, is 1.4356, or a 43.56% improvement. (If you use 8% per year, it’s 46.93%.) My mistake was counting the 1.00 as the first year, when it’s the “zeroth” year, so to speak.

            In that respect, it looks like LG Chem had no jump in ED improvement at all. But clearly they did have a price improvement, or there wouldn’t be so many customers signing up to buy their new battery cells.

      2. ggpa says:

        Well, the 2016 Volt has 18.4 kWh and weighs 183 kg.

        If Bolt uses the same tech, then we are looking at a battery weight of 600kg???

        And where will it fit on such a small car?

        Hopefully we learn more this week at CES

        1. Speculawyer says:

          You think 60KWH is required for 200+ miles of range? If they make it really aerodynamic and not very big, they should be able to do it for a little less than 50KWH.

          1. ggpa says:

            Even if 50kWh is enough … I think the problem still exists.

            1. Speculawyer says:

              Well EVs are heavier than gas cars. But not by a huge amount. Remember, you are going to get rid of the weight of the big ICE, the tank & gasoline, the transmission, the exhaust system, etc. So when you eliminate all that stuff and then add the heavy battery, it will be heavier than the gas car . . . but not hugely so.

              But it definitely is an issue. I’m sure that is the reason why Tesla went with a relatively high energy density battery despite the fact that it requires costly and toxic cobalt.

            2. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

              ggpa said:

              “Even if 50kWh is enough… I think the problem still exists.”

              The weight isn’t the problem; it’s the volume that’s the limit. The Tesla Model S does quite well with a battery pack weighing ~1200 pounds (544 kg). If the Bolt has a robust suspension, a heavy pack is no barrier to it being a compelling car.

              Moreover, the figure of 600 kg for the Bolt’s battery pack is a pretty severe over-estimation. If Tesla can build an 85 kWh battery pack that weighs ~1200 lbs, surely LG Chem can build an ~45 kWh battery pack that weighs substantially less.

              A larger fraction of a smaller battery pack’s weight will be packaging, the cooling system, and accessories such as the BMS. Scale that up, and a larger fraction of the weight will be the cells themselves.

              There is also the question of the type of cell chemistry used in the pack. EVs with a small battery pack, like the Volt, need cells chosen for high power, not high energy density. It’s well known that Tesla chooses its cells for high energy density; at one time the highest ED in the EV industry. Perhaps LG Chem’s new chemistry can challenge that energy density, or maybe even exceed it.

              1. Priusmaniac says:

                On volume, we have to wonder if an ev is so much constrained on that. If we take the Model S, the car is not standing out for its height, in fact, at contrary it seem to have a lot of unused height margin compared to other cars, not even considering SUV. The least that could be is a doubling of the battery volume while the car would still have a quiet normal height. So volume doesn’t appear super critical.
                On the weight side, it would obviously be a problem if the battery was 1088 Kg and it would be a strong advantage to have only half of the 544 Kg weight. Both in materials cost reduction and in mpKWh improvement.
                Of course there is a twist since more volume does imply a bigger package size and weight and a higher car means more aerodynamic drag but lower battery weight tend to mean less expensive and less rolling induced energy use.
                Tesla went for high volume density but that may be more a result of better battery longevity rather than a real optimization of volume versus weight factor. Perhaps someone has more precise data on this.

            3. Ryan H says:

              The Tesla Roadster gets 220-225 miles on 53kWh battery with a 2700 lb curb weight. The new upgraded 70kWh pack gets 360 miles. Even the new 70kWh pack uses relatively outdated cells. I don’t see any reason why a 50kWh pack in a compact car with current battery tech can’t get 200 miles or pretty darn close to it.

        2. SJC says:

          Tesla S carries more than 1000 pounds.

          1. ggpa says:

            Do you think Bolt and Tesla S are comparable in size? I think they are not!

            Also, the Tesla batteries are way denser than LG, so they take up less volume …

            1. Speculawyer says:

              Well do you know which specific battery chemistry that LG Chem is going to use in the Bolt? I suspect it is NOT the same chemistry that they are using in the Volt. They’ll probably use something with more energy density.

              1. ggpa says:

                LOL … you are restating the question I started the thread with. I guess time will tell.

                1. SJC says:

                  You like to argue.

      3. EVcarNut says:

        That is pretty amazing …We are getting There!

    3. wavelet says:

      The new LGF Chem cells are NMC, according to this:
      http://www.designnews.com/document.asp?doc_id=274204&dfpPParams=ind_184,industry_auto,aid_274204&dfpLayout=article
      While the article doesn’t mention the Bolt by name, it predates the Bolt announcement, and the Bolt pretty much has to be the 200-mi affordable electric car mentioned.

      The big deal about the new cells is 4.4V .

      1. ggpa says:

        wavelet, thanks for the information. The article speculates that “LG Chem’s new chemistry would have to provide 200 Wh/kg to drive 200 miles.”

        That would be good news, and make the Bolt much more viable than if it used the same technology as 2016 Volt.

      2. Rolf says:

        Is 4.4V typical for NMC ? I did not find that info in the artcle.

  3. Assaf says:

    According to Jose Pontes’ EV blog, AESC’s market share is far smaller, ~13%, and as of Q3 BYD was running neck-and-neck with LG Chem for #3. The way BYD is ramping up (2x last year), as of now they might be solidly in the #2 spot.

    Then Mitsubishi is beating Samsung for #5, and spots 7-10 are taken up by smaller Chinese battery makers.

    ev-sales.blogspot.com/2015/11/batteries-september-2015.html

  4. Speculawyer says:

    I’m surprised how low LG Chem is considering how many design wins they have. But I guess a lot of their design wins are for plug-in hybrids that only use a relatively small amount of batteries.

    Panasonic, with only a single customer, ends up the winner because that customer (Tesla) uses huge batteries.

  5. EVcarNut says:

    TESLA……The Best!

  6. Tman says:

    “What’s surprising is that LG Chem is widely considered the world’s leader on the battery technology front, yet it only holds 12.9% of the market”.

    Off course they are not as big as the claims by reports that Lux research keep putting out year after year without stating their methodology.

    Another reason could be LG chem’s highly vocal PR chest thumping their battery deals meanwhile less vocal Panasonic keep shipping out batteries by truck loads.

    Like Assaf stated above, BYD will finish 2015 in second place behind Panasonic. I already have them ahead of AESC going by sales up to November.

    Bottom line is this snapshot by Evans Electric is way off the mark

    1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

      Tman said:

      “…this snapshot by Evans Electric is way off the mark”

      Yes, I think it’s woefully outdated, and frankly I am surprised to see coverage of that on InsideEVs, because we’ve seen much better reporting here on the subject not so long ago.

  7. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

    The chart linked below seems to have much more current info, altho it’s from 1st quarter 2015, than the apparently very outdated data used by Evans Electric which is highlighted in the article above:

    1. Tman says:

      Jose Pontes of ev sales blog has up to September 2015

      http://ev-sales.blogspot.com/2015/11/batteries-september-2015.html

      1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

        That looks like a better source, thanks.