BMW places battery cell order worth €8 billion

BMW has increased its orders for battery cells for use in electric cars. According to an agency report, the Munich-based company is said to have ordered cells worth the equivalent of eight billion euros from four manufacturers.

As Bloomberg reports, citing information from group CEO Oliver Zipse, BMW increased the value of its battery cell orders from 12 billion euros previously to more than 20 billion euros now. The additional orders are split between CATL, Samsung SDI, Northvolt and Eve Energy.

The cells are to be used in the i4, the flagship iX SUV and other models BMW will produce by 2024 – such as a rich electric 5 Series and an electric version of the X1 have been announced. “We are following the market,” Zipse said. “The first half of the year showed that we are growing and gaining market share. We are in the middle of electrification.” According to the statement, BMW also plans to start switching to a new generation of batteries next year.

In a statement on the occasion of the IAA Mobility, BMW confirmed that it had “almost doubled” the supply volume for battery cells. Specifically, an agreed supply volume of 22.36 billion euros is mentioned for the fifth generation of the BMW e-drive. However, the suppliers or further details are not named in the announcement.

Three of the four battery manufacturers named by Bloomberg are also no surprise: CATL (for example in the iX3) and Samsung SDI currently cover the majority of the Munich BEV and PHEV fleet. BMW last placed an order worth billions with this duo in November 2019.

And there had already been a cooperation with the Swedish company Northvolt for some time, with a “long-term” supply agreement then being signed in July 2020. At the time, it was said that Northvolt would supply cells worth two billion euros to BMW from 2024. Bloomberg, on the other hand, now writes that it is about vehicles that BMW will produce until 2024 – possibly the agreement between BMW and Northvolt that was concluded in 2020 has been adjusted.

New to the list of battery suppliers for BMW, on the other hand, is the Chinese manufacturer Eve Energy. In the summer of 2020, there were only a few rumours that the BMW Brilliance joint venture (which manufactures the iX3 in Shenyang) was negotiating with a subsidiary of Eve Energy. Details were not known at the time. Bloomberg also does not specify in the current report which cell chemistry or formats are to be involved.

Eve Energy specialises in the development and production of LFP cells. In May, there were rumours that Eve Energy could become Tesla’s second LFP cell supplier after CATL. In addition, the Chinese company is reportedly cooperating with the Israeli company StoreDot to bring their fast-charging “XFC Flash Battery” with a silicon-dominant anode to series maturity by 2024.


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