new battery that promises to solve two of the biggest grumbles about electric cars – high prices and low driving ranges – is headed for shop floors in just over a year.
The lithium battery, which experts say could be a game-changing “killer app” for the global car market, can triple the driving range of an electric vehicle and significantly lower its costs, say the US scientists who developed it.
It can also double the running life of a smartphone or a laptop, said Dr Qichao Hu, who developed the device with his former professor, Donald Sadoway, a prominent battery expert at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
But its impact on the cost and performance of an electric car could prove transformational, said Prof Sadoway, whose work on other batteries has been backed by Microsoft co-founder, Bill Gates.
“We’ve got to get a car on the showroom floor for $30,000, not $130,000 and the big piece is the battery: it’s too expensive and it runs down too fast,” said Prof Sadoway.