Auto Tech

A123 signs battery deal

Automotive News reports on a new battery manufacturing contract and plant by A123 Systems.

Advanced battery manufacturer A123 Systems Inc. plans to manufacture advanced lithium ion battery systems for all-electric delivery vehicles at a plant in suburban Detroit scheduled to open later this month.

A123 said last week it has signed an agreement with Navistar International Corp. to develop lithium ion battery systems for Navistar-Modec EV Alliance, a joint venture between commercial vehicle maker Navistar and electric vehicle manufacturer Modec.

The all-electric vehicles made by the joint venture will have a gross vehicle weight of about 12,000 pounds with a two-ton payload and will be used primarily as delivery trucks in urban areas. The vehicles are expected to have a range of about 100 miles on a single charge, according to an A123 statement.

A123 is expected to invest about $132 million at the plant, which is expected to begin manufacturing materials for its lithium ion batteries late this year or in early 2011.

(Source: Automotive News)