Envia Systems in Newark, Calif., says its rechargeable lithium-ion battery has an "energy density" of 400 watt-hours per kilogram, the highest energy density known, the San Jose Mercury News reported Tuesday.
When ready for commercial use the 400 Wh/kg battery, with a range of 300 miles and a cost of about $25,000, will bring down the price of electric vehicles and make them more affordable for mainstream consumers, the company said.
Low-cost, high-energy density batteries have been the Holy Grail of electric vehicle research, experts say, and while battery costs will come down with volume manufacturing, energy density has been a much harder goal to achieve.
"Rather than just a proof-of-concept of energy density, I am pleased that our team was successful in actually delivering 400 Wh/kg automotive grade 45 Amp-hour lithium-ion rechargeable cells," Sujeet Kumar, Envia's co-founder and CTO, said in a statement.
While some in the industry look to move "beyond lithium" and work with new materials, many expect lithium-ion batteries to remain dominant for electric vehicles in the coming decades.
"The rumors of the demise of lithium-ion batteries were greatly exaggerated," Envia Chief Executive Officer Atul Kapadia said.