Chinese Contemporary Amperex Technology Co Ltd (CATL), which is the world's largest lithium-ion battery supplier for EVs, announced another customer for its flagship prismatic lithium iron phosphate (LFP) battery cells and cell-to-pack (CTP) technology.
According to CnEVPost, CATL will provide LFP CTP batteries for Solaris, a Polish electric bus manufacturer, which happens to be the top player in Europe with 390 units delivered in 2021 (ahead of BYD-ADL - 375, and Mercedes-Benz - 333).
There are no details about the expected volume, but considering that the LFP appears to be one of the core solutions for heavy-duty vehicles, it might quickly become the main type used by Solaris. Previously, the company was flexibly applying various battery solutions.
Another unanswered question is whether the agreement concerns the latest third-generation of CATL's CTP hinted at earlier this year. This version has an energy density above 160 Wh/kg and over 290 Wh/l on the pack level.
Thanks to LFP CTP batteries, Solaris' electric buses are expected to offer a higher available payload or range, compared to the standard use of LFP. This type of battery also used by BYD, has also great longevity, safety, and fast charging capabilities.
The LFP becomes also a core solution for electric cars, produced by the largest manufacturers like Tesla and BYD, which recently introduced a structural battery pack version of the Blade Battery in the Seal model.
Returning to Solaris, the company currently offers an entire lineup of battery-electric buses in multiple length versions, as well as hydrogen fuel cell buses, trolleys and even trams.
Just this month the company received an order for 60 Solaris Urbino 12 electric buses for Madrid, Spain. In April, 75 units were ordered by ATM Milano in Italy (on top of 140 units ordered earlier), which gives us glimpses of how quickly things progress.
It will not take long until top manufacturers will be producing more than 1,000 electric buses per year, each, towards even higher numbers later this decade.