January 11, 2006
New joint venture to build advanced batteries for hybrids
Detroit, Michigan – Johnson Controls and Saft have launched a joint venture to supply advanced-technology batteries for current and future hybrid-electric and electric vehicles, announced at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.
The show display featured a concept hybrid SUV, based on a Ford Escape, retrofitted with a prototype lithium-ion battery pack. The prototype weighs about 50 per cent less than the NiHM battery system it replaces and occupies about half the footprint. Currently, Johnson Controls estimates a 25 per cent price overhead on the lithium-ion system if it were produced, although large-scale production would bring costs down.