Lithium-Ion Batteries Will Drive EVs Well Into the Future

A new report from Navigant Research suggests demand for lithium-ion batteries, which have become the top choice for powering electric vehicles over the last few years, will only increase over the next ten years.

Ever since Toyota released its 2012 plug-in Prius, which relied solely on a lithium-ion battery rather than the nickel-metal hydride battery that dominated the EV market at the time, demand for lithium-ion batteries has steadily climbed.

“The shift to lithium ion represents a major endorsement of the ability of this chemistry to perform consistently in an automotive environment,” said Navigant senior research analyst David Alexander in a press release. “Most of the major automakers have introduced battery electric vehicle (BEV) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) models in the last two years, almost all of which use lithium ion batteries for onboard energy storage.”

We’ve got good reason to keep using lithium-ion batteries. As Ecomento explains, these batteries are lighter, last longer and store more energy than the older nickel-metal hydride models. While they currently cost more than the old models, they’re becoming more inexpensive by the day. The manufacturing process is relatively eco-friendly, too. No wonder Navigant expects their global sales to hit more than $26 billion a year by 2023.

While lithium-ion batteries are extremely popular in many consumer electronics, including laptops and smartphones, another report from IDTechEx predicts more than half the demand for lithium-ion batteries will be for electric and hybrid vehicles by the end of the decade. Looks like lithium-ion batteries will be driving us into the future.