Chinese battery giant CATL and a sub-brand from Chinese carmaker Geely will debut recently-revealed Qilin cell-to-pack (CTP) battery technology on a pair of new cars – one of which has a claimed 1000km of range.
The announcement is part of a five-year strategic partnership between CATL and Zeekr, a Geely brand, to “promote the technological advancement of the new energy industry”.
CTP technology dispenses with battery modules and additional wiring, making the batteries easier, faster, and cheaper to produce than traditional packs. It’s available in both lithium iron phosphate and nickel manganese cobalt cell chemistries.
According to the Chinese battery giant, the Qilin CTP batteries have a “record-breaking volume utilisation efficiency” of 72 per cent and a gravimetric energy density of 255Wh/kg.
The BYD Blade battery, which is used in the BYD Atto 3, has a comparable gravimetric energy density of 166Wh/kg.
CATL suggests with the same battery chemistry and pack size, the third-generation CTP battery technology “can deliver 13 per cent more power than the [Tesla] 4680 battery”.
It also notes “all-round improvement in range, fast-charging, safety, service lift, efficiency and low-temperature performance” over the cylindrical battery type.
The Chinese battery giant says the Qilin CTP battery technology is capable of “delivering a range of over 1000km”, and also supports fast-charging from 10 to 80 per cent in 10 minutes.
The first vehicle to receive the new batteries will be the Zeekr 009, an all-electric people mover that will rival the Voyah Dreamer and Maxus G90 in China
This vehicle hasn’t been revealed yet, but a number of teaser images have been shown on Zeekr’s Weibo page.
The automaker says the Zeekr 009 people mover with Qilin batteries will be delivered to Chinese customers from the first quarter of 2023. At this stage Zeekr hasn’t detailed any technical specifications about the 009.
The second vehicle to receive the Qilin CTP batteries will be the Zeekr 001 shooting brake that was first released in China in 2021.
This so-called Zeekr 001 Qilin Edition will be delivered to Chinese customers from the second quarter of 2023, will pack a range of 1000km on the more generous Chinese CLTC test cycle.
The current model is available with a 100kWh ternary lithium battery pack with a claimed range of 732km according to CLTC testing.
CATL first revealed its third-generation Qilin CTP battery technology in March 2022.
A previous image indicated this latest CTP battery technology is available in single, double, and triple block configurations.
PushEV has previously speculated if the Chinese-built Tesla Model 3 used the new CATL Qilin batteries it would be 28 per cent more energy dense – from 125 to 160Wh/kg. This would theoretically mean more range from the same size battery.
Seeing CATL already produces LFP batteries for the Chinese-built Tesla Model 3 and Model Y, it wouldn’t be surprising if this new technology makes its way into these cars at some point.
CATL is the world’s largest battery manufacturer and currently produces batteries for automakers including Tesla, Volkswagen Group, BMW, Hyundai, Honda and Volvo.