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From South Korea, LG Chem is Ruling the Electric Vehicle World

Who is leading the world when it comes to electric car technology? Is it GM because the Chevrolet Volt is the most successful plug-in car on today’s market? Is it Nissan because it launched the first mass-produced EV? Could it be a start-up like Envia, which promises to deliver revolutionary low-cost high-energy EV batteries? Those are exciting perspectives, but as it stands today, LG Chem is the winner by a huge margin.
Opel Ampera, the European sister of the Volt. LG Chem cells inside

Opel Ampera, the European sister of the Volt. LG Chem cells inside

EV fans first heard of LG Chem in 2004, at the unveiling of the Venturi Fetish, the world’s first electric sports car. Venturi didn’t build many of them, but they had cells from LG Chem. Today, LG Chem supplies cells to GM which uses them in the Chevrolet Volt. LG Chem also works for Ford, doing even more business than with GM, because when GM assemble its own battery packs from LG Chem cells, Ford buys complete and ready-to-use batteries from LG Chem.

Then, there’s the big surprise from Renault from a few weeks ago. The upcoming Renault Zoe, which launches later this year, was expected to get the same cells as the Nissan LEAF. Renault and Nissan had formed an alliance more than 10 years ago, and Nissan had made large investments to mass-produce cells, so it only seemed logical. But in a surprising and unexplained move—I hope to find out more about it at the Paris motor show— we learned recently that the Zoe will get its cells from LG Chem, as the Renault Twizy already does.


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