Range-doubling battery technology!
That's the promise that's been coming from GS Yuasa for several years. The thinking being that higher-energy dense lithium-ion batteries will lead to high increases in range.
A recent Nikkei article again warms up to those promises.
The goal for the Japanese battery manufacturer is the apparent doubling of battery capacity (and therefore electric car range while displacing the same area and weight). Mass production of these "breakthrough" cells are set for as early as 2020...so apparently it isn't a thought-bubble, or lab experiment of a new, unproven technology.
GS Yuasa through joint venture Lithium Energy Japan supplies batteries for Mitsubishi i-MiEV (16 kWh) and Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV (12 kWh).
The problem is that there are no firm numbers in the article. Doubling the first generation cells in say a plug-in Mitsubishi would only match the top players today, not pass them.
"Lithium Energy Japan, a joint venture with trading house Mitsubishi Corp. and carmaker Mitsubishi Motors, will develop the cells, which will be produced at its plant in Shiga Prefecture and supplied to automakers in Japan and Europe."
The story is interesting in the context of the recent news with Nissan's battery unit - which it recently sold (AESC and other manufacturing facilities around the world). Mitsubishi is now controlled by Nissan, so in a way, the company is now part of this joint venture with Lithium Energy Japan and GS Yuasa (similar to AESC with NEC, but on a much smaller scale). What we can draw from this in regards to Nissan's future isn't clear, but it's interesting nonetheless.
Shares of GS Yuasa traded up 10% on Tuesday on the news.