Commercial EV startup ELMS Reuters signs battery supply agreement with CATL


লের Photo from Reuters file: An electric last mile solution UD-1 electric commercial van is seen in Auburn Hills, Michigan, USA. Reuters / Ben Cleman


By Ben Cleman

DETROIT (Reuters) – U.S. commercial electric vehicle maker Electric Last Mile Solutions Inc. (ELMS) said Thursday it has signed a battery supply agreement with China’s Contemporary Ampex Technology Co., Ltd. (CATL).

The financial terms of the agreement, which runs until 2025, have not been disclosed. CATL’s batteries power a Class 1 small delivery vehicle that ELMS began building last month at its factory in Misawaka, Indiana.

Companies are also looking for a setup where CATL will have a U.S. plant that makes battery cells and will send batteries to assembly packs at the ELMS plant in Indiana, an ELMS spokesman said.

“We have reached an important milestone in securing battery power in a highly challenging supply environment,” Rob Song, Deputy Chief Financial Officer at ELMS, said in a statement.

Battery manufacturers are increasing production to meet growing global demand as carmakers accelerate the transition to electric vehicles by adhering to strict emission regulations to tackle climate change.

CATL, which supplies a number of global car manufacturers, including Tesla (NASDAQ 🙂 Inc., Volkswagen AG (OTC 🙂 and General Motors Co (NYSE :), did not announce where to open a U.S. plant, but bought a facility in Glasgow last year. Kentucky. Kentucky state officials encouraged CATL in September 2020 to build a potential battery pack plant there.

In Ningde, China-based CATL, which already has a U.S. sales office, has previously declined to comment on plans for the U.S. market. President Joe Biden has prioritized the use of electric vehicles to make the United States more competitive with China.

Under the agreement with ELMS, CATL will supply lithium-iron phosphate (LFP) batteries using a simple cell-to-pack technology. LFP chemistry is lower cost and safer than cobalt- or nickel-based cathode in other batteries.

In August, Michigan-based ELMS Troy, which unveiled a reverse merger with a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) in June, said it was building 1,000 vans this year despite the impact of COVID-19 and industry-wide supply chain problems. .

Following the ভ 34,000 small van before the federal tax credit, ELMS plans to build a larger Class 3 truck in the second half of 2022.

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