- Dec 21, 2009
A123 Systems and Shanghai Automotive form battery JV
We haven't heard much from A123 Systems in recent months, other than the battery maker's public stock offering. Its best shot at a major automotive battery program seemed to be with Chrysler, until we found out that all those plug-in vehicles we saw in Detroit last January had been pretty much killed. With Chrysler uninterested for now, GM going with LG Chem and Ford opting for Johnson Controls-Saft, the fate of A123's plans for a Michigan battery plant are unknown.
For now, A123 seems to be looking to China. Last week, A123 announced a new joint venture with Shanghai Automotive Industries Company (SAIC) to produce complete battery packs in China. The packs will be targeted at both plug-in hybrid and pure battery electric vehicles. The new venture will be 51 percent owned by SAIC with A123 holding the rest. SAIC has been planning hybrid and plug-in hybrid versions of its Roewe 750 and 550 models and the new venture could potentially supply those