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Shortly after reports of leaky batteries coming from Cobasys, which greatly slowed the production of GM's mild hybrid vehicles, such as the Saturn Vue and Aura hybrids and Chevy Malibu hybrid, comes a report from Automotive News which suggests that General Motors may just purchase the troubled battery maker outright. That's one way to manage the problem, wouldn't you say? Though GM would own 100-percent of Cobasys, some sort of partnership is said to be in the works, though that other entity remains unknown. Before this announcement, Chevron and Energy Conversion Devices, co-owners of the battery supplier, had been fighting over ownership of the company.

What effect this news may have on GM's future hybrid plans remains unknown. Currently, Cobasys supplies nickel metal hydride batteries to the General. The upcoming Chevy Volt will use the newer lithium ion batteries. Still, General Motors recently showed off a new version of its mild hybrid technology, and therefore may have extended plans for future batteries from Cobasys.

[Source: Automotive News - sub. req'd]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 6 Years Ago
      I'll bet the truck plant workers are real happy to hear this.
      • 6 Years Ago
      This is the only way to not only have a sufficient supply of "GOOD" batteries, but to insure your technology doesn't go to another company after you've spent millions on development, build them yourselves. Toyota and Honda are doing the same thing by building their own battery suppliers.
        • 6 Years Ago
        It is no different than building your own engines, batteries are the engines of the future.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Cobasys is jointly owned by Chevron-Texaco and Ovonics--the inventor and owner of the NiMH battery patent. Buying this company could give GM control of the NiMH battery business used in mild hybrids, including the Prius.

      Depending on how GM plays their cards, this might force current users of NiMH batteries into using Li Ion. Will this slow the transition to electric cars or speed it up?
      • 6 Years Ago
      Good plan, GM!

      Talk smack about them to drive the stock price down. Then scoop em up cheap!

      Martha Stewart would approve.
      • 6 Years Ago
      So basically they have to buy it or watch it go under and lose a major supplier. Not a good choice to be put in considering the unit is losing money
      • 6 Years Ago
      So wait... five articles down we're talking about GM being nearly bankrupt. Here, they're buying out more suppliers. Which is it?
        • 6 Years Ago
        GM can make this work, however like their manufacturing facilities they need to wake up and take note of who's running their plants. Right now GM has BBK a consulting firm trying to assist Cobasys, this is a mistake, the team they sent to Cobasys is run by an old GM guy. He doesn't know his head from a hole in the ground, 3 quarters of the decisions he makes are wrong and already have had effect on Cobasys's performance. GM better wake up and have someone from the outside run it, not BBK. More than likely it will wind up like other plants GM owns, out of business or in Mexico. The plant is new, the product is new and in the last 7 months has doubled in size and brought 140 jobs to its area, and will be adding more jobs now that the local contract has been settled. They are moving to a 4 shift 24-7 operation. With future plans to build a sister plant to produce more batteries to supply GM, and Chrysler, yes Chrysler. If GM screws this up, they need to go out of business.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Just what the General needs. Another troubled division, as if they don't have enough problems already!
      • 6 Years Ago
      Note to Editor: It's Aura Greenline. Their is no Astra Greenline( though an Astra Diesel sounds good GM!).
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