Late last year, Daimler AG announced that it would partner with Evonik for the development and manufacturing of automotive lithium ion batteries. Daimler bought half of Evonik's LiTec battery unit at that time. Now, Daimler is looking to bring in another partner for the project. At this time, its not clear if that would be a partner on the battery side to bring in more technology, or a partner to consume batteries and help spread the development costs.
At the Detroit Auto Show, Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced that his company would supply battery packs and chargers to Daimler for the test fleet of electric Smart ForTwos. If Tesla were to hook up with Daimler and Evonik, it could potentially provide them a lower cost supply of batteries for the Model S and other future vehicles. At the same time, Tesla could contribute some of its battery management knowledge to the project.

More likely, Daimler will be looking for a larger partner that could provide economies of scale to the battery manufacturing.

[Source: Automotive News - sub req'd]

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