Bosch pulls the plug on battery cell R&D, production

February 28, 2018 //By Christoph Hammerschmidt
Bosch pulls the plug on battery cell R&D, production
Robert Bosch GmbH, the world's largest automotive supplier, surprisingly announced to withdraw from the research into materials and processes of battery cells for electric vehicles. According to media reports, the company has also abandoned plans for its own production of such batteries.

After careful consideration, the company decided against its own production, explained Rolf Bulander, head of Bosch's automotive division Mobility Solutions. Instead, “Bosch will continue to buy cells and then refine them," said Bulander. The decision comes as a surprise, as reports of a European cell production were circulating recently.

Now, Bosch considers such independent production to be unnecessary. "Cell production is not crucial to our success," said Bulander. The extremely high investments required to set up such a production facility are too risky. Therefore, in the overall interest of the company, it was decided not to pursue these plans any further. Bosch also intends to dispense with cell research and related materials in the future. The start-up company Seeo, which Bosch took over just a few years ago and which, according to previous readings, had developed a promising technology for high-performance batteries, is now to be sold again. Seeo had developed a solid-state technology that, after further improvements, should offer twice the power density of today's lithium-ion batteries - at half the cost. According to Bosch, Bosch has invested a mid three-digit million euro sum in the development of such batteries in recent years.


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