Panasonic Li-Ion EV batteryUpdate: Toyota and Panasonic held a joint press conference in Japan on Tuesday to confirm details of the new joint venture. The two companies will contribute a total of 3,500 employees to the new entity, which will produce prismatic lithium-ion batteries at two Panasonic factories, one in Japan and the other in China. While the two companies have signed an agreement to form the new battery partnership, the venture is awaiting approval by antitrust authorities. This story has been updated throughout to reflect these details. Toyota has been a laggard in the race to transition to electric cars. The company was an early leader in fuel-efficient hybrids, but has since focused on developing fuel-cell vehicles, and executives have expressed skepticism about electric cars and lithium-ion batteries. Now in an effort to accelerate its move to electric cars, the company is pairing up with the largest manufacturer of lithium-ion battery cells in the world for electric cars, Panasonic. Panasonic also supplies batteries for Tesla, built at the giant Nevada Gigafactory that the two jointly own. CHECK OUT: Lithium-ion vs. nickel-metal hydride: Toyota still likes both for its hybrids The Nikkei Asian Review reported Sunday that the two companies… Read full this story
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