2017 Honda Clarity Electric
Honda spokesperson Teruhiko Tatebe has revealed to Reuters that the automaker is investigating the use of solid-state batteries for future electric cars.
Solid-state batteries are seen as a breakthrough technology for electric cars as they promise significantly improved battery density compared to current technology, which means range can be increased without having to suffer from a bigger battery and the associated weight costs.
Although solid-state batteries aren’t new, they’re still difficult to manufacture on a mass scale. But this is expected to change in the coming years, with Toyota on Monday confirming it will launch electric cars powered by solid-state batteries early next decade.
Honda hasn’t said if it will also launch an electric car with solid-state batteries, though the company could certainly use the technology. Honda’s first volume electric car, the Clarity Electric, has a piddling 89 miles of range.
While there have been reports in Japan claiming Honda is working with Nissan to develop next-generation batteries, Tatebe told Reuters that Honda is working alone on solid-state batteries.
“We’ve been researching all solid-state batteries,” he said. “At the moment we’re not developing them with another automaker.”
Many automakers see partnerships as necessary to spread the cost of not only electrifying their lineups but also developing self-driving technology. For example, Toyota, another automaker behind the competition when it comes to electric cars, is looking at how to work with Panasonic on battery technology. BMW has also partnered with a company dealing in solid-state battery technology.