Could battery swapping replace EV charging?

But while battery-swapping has been dormant in Europe, the technology is expanding at a rate in China. Nio now claims the capacity to make 30,000 swaps per day and is leading the private market, but others are looking to close the gap. Investing in the technology includes battery company CATL, which is launching a service called Evogo that claims swaps in under a minute and for which the FAW Group has said it will make a new MPV.

Meanwhile, Aulton New Energy claims collaborations with 20 car makers, including Changan and Dongfeng, to create EVs with swappable batteries.

1 Could battery swapping replace EV charging?

Also getting involved is Geely, the owner of Volvo and Lotus, which last year announced plans to roll out 5000 swap stations globally.

In China, the technology is used for taxis and even trucks. Of the 10,513 ‘new energy’ HGVs sold last year in China, 31% had battery-swap technology fitted, according to figures from Bloomberg NEF.

If you’re thinking battery swapping comes closest to the ease of refuelling, the global oil companies agree with you. Last year, BP signed a deal with Aulton New Energy to develop battery-swapping services, while many of Nio’s swap stations are located on the forecourts of Chinese oil giant Sinopec. In Europe, meanwhile, Nio signed an agreement in December with Shell to jointly construct swap stations in Europe and China.

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