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Chrysler Purported in Talks with A123 About Electric Car Batteries

Three of the four prototypes announced by Chrysler would utilize lithium ion batteries.

Published: 24-Sep-2008

Chrysler LLC, in a rush to develop new, fuel-efficient vehicles, is in advanced talks about using batteries made by A123 Systems Inc. in an electric car due to be launched by 2011, people familiar with the matter said.

Chrysler, which now depends on trucks, sport-utility vehicles and minivans for 75% of its sales, is scheduled to demonstrate its battery-powered car for the first time in public Tuesday.

A123, Watertown, Mass., is a seven-year-old company vying to break into the nascent market for lithium-ion battery packs for automobiles. A123 is in the running to supply batteries for the Chevrolet Volt, the electric car General Motors Corp. is developing.

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The phosphate-based Epoch batteries are equipped with an advanced management system that will monitor and adjust cell performance.

The battery system was developed by CSIRO in Australia, built by the Furukawa Battery Company of Japan and tested in the United Kingdom through the American-based Advanced Lead-Acid Battery Consortium.

The new batteries will make the GM Hybrid System nearly three times more powerful than the system it replaces. Pictured is 2009 Saturn Vue Green Line with Two-mode hybrid drive.

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