Why EV battery tests will always be beneficial

12th January 2024

Why will EV battery tests remain beneficial even as more battery plants are built?

In the week that state aid funding for Northvolt to build an EV battery plant in Germany is announced, Alex Johns, Altelium’s Partnership Lead, explains why the need for battery testing will be beneficial, no matter how many battery plants are built.

“Production is hard”. How many times has Elon Musk reminded us of this in interviews and at Tesla events?

It applies to batteries as much as it does to the entire EV. New factories take time to both ramp up volumes and, critically, to achieve acceptable yields of high-quality cells. This is especially true when manufacturing new cell designs. Tesla, Northvolt and others are already in production, but they and many others are planning or building dozens of large battery cell factories in the next five years in Europe and the US, incentivised both by the needs of the energy transition and generous subsidies from the EU and the Inflation Reduction Act in the US.

Not many people know that even when a battery cell factory has gone through all the pain of early production, cell longevity (even from the same quality-approved batches) can vary substantially. So, when you as an EV buyer are considering a purchase, you want to know the State of Health (SoH) of the EV battery in front of you.

An average for that type of EV and battery is not sufficient. Age and mileage are also only two factors which will influence SoH. Charging patterns, thermal management and manufacturing variability are some of the many others influences.

Alex concludes:

This is why it is so important, both now and when all these new battery factories start volume production, to always get an independent battery test before you buy an EV. It will make you much better informed, ensure you are getting a fair deal and may save you a lot of money and difficulty.

To read about the funding for a new battery plant in Germany please read this announcement from Reuters: Northvolt plant in Germany