BMW's head of battery development, Andreas Raith, interviewed by the CarAdvice, says that lithium-ion batteries in all-electric and plug-in hybrid cars are designed for “15 years and beyond."
There is nothing to worry about as BMW took a conservative approach to achieve 70% of battery capacity after 15 years. The field data collected so far indicates that results are better than envisioned.
Life-expectancy for BEVs and PHEVs is on par with ICE cars.
To make batteries durable, BMW utilized thermal management system with liquid cooling.
Andreas Raith said:
“It’s not a marketing statement, those batteries are designed to last as long as the vehicle,”
“We can prove that with the field data that we see today coming in from our existing fleet of plug-in hybrids… it’s fair to say and I think it’s a statement for the entire industry and community, everyone is so concerned about life time and the engineering community as a whole takes a very conservative approach to preserving those batteries.”
“BMW specification in case of durability is no different between combustion engines or battery driven vehicles.”
When 15 years pass, capacity, available power and efficiency will fade,but the battery still will be working. Some may keep driving the old car, while others will maybe take the battery out for energy storage systems before recycling.
“As soon as the pipeline fills up, and it takes so many years to fill up, there is substantial value in those batteries.”
“On the automotive side, we expect the pipeline to be pretty solid, and those materials lithium, nickel, copper, there is no toxic in there, it’s just metals and its very recyclable.”