GM Announces Battery Deal For New Vehicle Program, But What Is It?

General Motors awarded A123 Systems with a contract to provide batteries for future electrified automakers that the automaker plans to sell in other markets.

The two companies have worked together before in the past on similar projects. In fact, A123 Systems was long considered to be the sole power choice for the Chevy Volt before GM awarded the contract to LG Chem. This time around, A123 Systems gets a new contract for the production of its nanophosphate lithium ion cells, which GM believes is the next step forward in battery technology for EVs.

“Today’s announcement is the latest milestone in the partnership between GM and A123, and it showcases the type of collaboration between U.S. companies necessary to build a long-term domestic battery and electric vehicle industry,” Jason Forcier, vice president of the Automotive Solutions Group at A123, said in a prepared release.

GM's release noted the batteries would be used in "future electric vehicles for select global markets," but abstained from divulging any further information. Although it's unlikely the battery packs are destined for the Volt at this point in time, they could work their way into models using Volt-like powertrain. We can't help but notice the Volt MPV5 concept not only seemed rather production feasible (it essentially resembled an Orlando with ER-EV drivetrain), but that it also could prove to be a direct competitor for Ford's upcoming C-Max Energi.

Another possibility could be a small, battery electric vehicle. GM's Indian wing is currently testing prototype versions of the all-electric Chevy Beat subcompact --  known here as the Spark – which could help cut down the stifling smog in some of the country’s more congested cities, provided it ultimately enters production.

Source: GM

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