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Nissan VP doesn't think solid-state EV batteries are coming soon

Automakers are already talking about them, but that's not the same as producing them en masse.

Nissan

You might have heard the phrase "solid-state batteries" in reference to a new innovation that could produce big benefits for EVs. It might sound like they're coming soon, but one engineering exec doesn't think so.

Takao Asami, Nissan's senior vice president for research and advanced engineering, told Automotive News that he thinks everyone needs to pump the brakes on solid-state batteries. "All solid-state batteries, roughly speaking, are still in the initial phase of research," Asami told AN. "So according to my feeling, it's practically a zero at this stage."

One of Nissan's forthcoming EVs is said to borrow its styling from this IMx concept. Solid-state or not, this car's a looker.

Nissan

Asami expects them to be viable for wide-scale deployment in the mid-2020s at the earliest. That's only a few years past Toyota's previously stated estimate of 2022.

Solid-state batteries are called such because they use a solid electrolyte instead of the liquid one commonly found in today's lithium ion batteries. Benefits include a lower chance of overheating, a higher energy density (more range, less weight) and faster recharging times. However, at this point, they are egregiously expensive to manufacture.

Toyota isn't the only automaker on this bandwagon. BMW has partnered with Solid Power, a startup that makes solid-state batteries, to put this new tech in future performance EVs. Honda has also confirmed that it's researching solid-state battery tech.

Solid-state or otherwise, Nissan's ready to charge ahead with its electrification efforts. Late in March, the company unveiled its "M.O.V.E. to 2022" plan, which outlines the company's goal to unveil eight new EVs in the next four years, in addition to several Chinese-market EVs that it will manufacture in China through joint ventures. Infiniti, Nissan's luxury brand, has separately announced its intention to offer electrified variants of all its new vehicles starting in 2021.