Scania and Northvolt develop heavy EV battery

By Becky Schultz21 April 2023

According to the companies, validation tests have shown a lifetime for the battery cell in the capacity to power trucks for 1.5 million km. (Photo: Scania)

In 2017, Scania and Swedish battery developer and manufacturer Northvolt joined forces to develop and commercialize a battery cell for heavy commercial vehicles. The companies have now unveiled the jointly developed lithium-ion battery cell, which is rated at a 157 Ah capacity and nominal voltage of 3.6 V, and which they say has, in validation tests, shown a lifetime capacity to power trucks for 1.5 million km, or more than 932,000 miles.

“As the development of the battery cell started, we targeted high performance, low operating costs and long lifetime. We decided on a requirement for the cell to enable a 1.5 million km long lifetime for a heavy-duty Scania vehicle,” said Christian Levin, Scania CEO. “The tests show that this requirement can not only be met but also exceeded.”

Peter Carlsson, CEO and co-founder of Northvolt, acknowledged the timeline set at the outset of the partnership the battery cell’s development was ambitious. “To have proceeded through extensive development and validation phases, and now be delivering cells from Northvolt Ett which exceed our initial expectations in terms of performance is a tremendous accomplishment for everyone involved,” he added.

Northvolt electric truck battery The battery cell has a prismatic format with a capacity of 157 Ah and a nominal voltage of 3.6 V. (Photo: Scania)

The battery cells are being produced at the Northvolt Ett gigafactory in Skellefteå, Sweden, using electricity generated by hydro power and wind power. Due to the fossil-free energy and integration of additional sustainable production features at the Ett facility, the estimated carbon footprint of the cell at full serial production is approximately one-third that of a comparative industry reference cell (IVL 2019 lithium-ion NMC 111 cell), the company stated.

Later this year, Scania plans to inaugurate a new battery factory in Södertälje, Sweden, for assembly of the cells into battery packs for start of heavy-duty electric truck production.

“Northvolt’s mission to build the world’s greenest batteries matches Scania’s purpose to drive the shift toward sustainable transport perfectly,” Levin said. “I’m truly looking forward to putting the final puzzle pieces together ahead of the take-off of premium electric vehicles later this year.”

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