Porsche may need to team up with a partner to produce high-voltage battery cells for future models, the brand’s head of development said in an interview.
Existing suppliers are focusing on volume and cost targets as demand for zero-emission vehicles accelerates in Europe, with more specialized needs such as Porsche’s falling to the back of the line, Michael Steiner, Porsche’s director of R&D, told Automotive News Europe.
“We would really like to use high power cells for motorsports and eventually, if proven suitable, for use in performance road cars, but amid this giant transformation that is sweeping the industry, there tends to be little room for special requests,” Steiner said. “Most partners are just concentrating on ramping up their production lines at the moment, so our needs come as a second priority at the moment, if not a third.”
As a result, Steiner said, smaller brands like Porsche may need to look elsewhere to get access to cells tailored to their demands, including environmental ones.
German news media have reported that Porsche is working with Custom Cells, a startup with sites in Itzehoe and Tuebingen, on specialized cell manufacturing through a joint venture, Cellforce.
Steiner declined to comment directly on those reports.
“If we can get access to aid, we will campaign for it, but we’re not at the point yet where we everything has been finalized,” he said. “We’re very confident, though, that we will enter into a cooperation to research, develop and produce in small series high performance cells, and if it makes sense to scale that, we could then consider doing so, either with a partner or within the group.”