Lithium ion (Li-ion) batteries have won the race to be the chemistry of choice for electric vehicle traction power. They offer the best combination of safety, power, energy duration, durability, and cost. Although the majority of automobiles with traction batteries on the road have nickel metal hydride (NiMH) cells, most new production vehicles will be shipped with Li-ion batteries in the coming years.
Navigant Research expects the industry to produce 49 GWh of battery capacity for vehicles in 2020, a more than tenfold increase over 2013 production numbers.
However, the vendor landscape within the Li-ion industry is still unsettled. Some companies have built out their manufacturing capacity, yet have failed to garner large automotive contracts.
Others have been more patient in constructing factories but are ready to make major strategic moves in that direction. Manufacturers that are able to reduce costs significantly while ensuring that safety and reliability standards are met will successfully tap into the world’s growing need for electric drivetrains. Most market players are jockeying for position in that future reality while trying to remain solvent today.
This Navigant Research Leaderboard Report examines the strategy and execution of 11 Li-ion battery vendors that are active in the electric vehicle market and rates them on 13 criteria, including systems integration, safety engineering, chemistry performance, geographic reach, manufacturing and product performance, pricing, and overall corporate financial health.
Using Navigant Research’s proprietary Leaderboard methodology, vendors are profiled, rated, and ranked with the goal of providing industry participants with an objective assessment of these companies’ relative strengths and weaknesses in the global electric vehicle battery market.
Any company currently in bankruptcy proceedings was excluded, as was any company that provides cells for only one country’s markets and any company that does not sell into the automotive market was excluded. There are more than 100 Li-ion cell manufacturers in the world, but most concentrate their efforts in the consumer electronics space.
Navigant profiled, rated, and ranked the 11 with the goal of providing industry participants with an objective assessment of these companies’ relative strengths and weaknesses in the global electric vehicle battery market.
Only three companies attained Leader status in this Leaderboard (LG Chem, JCI and AESC). The largest group fell into the Contenders category, which signifies that a company has shown the required staying power in the market despite relatively slow growth. At the same time, a Contender must have significant financial reserves for future investment.
The third category consists of Challengers. These companies scored high enough to show that they have the capability to remain in the market as it develops and can potentially attain Leader status in the coming years. The Followers category consists of companies that scored in the lowest quartile and have significant concerns going forward on the direction of their strategy or their capability to execute.
No companies fell into the Followers category in this Navigant Research Leaderboard Report.
Top 10 Vendors:
1. LG Chem
5. Samsung SDI
6. SK Continental E-Motion
9. GS Yuasa