In a funding round led by BMW i Ventures, Our Next Energy (ONE) secured $65 million to scale its electric vehicle (EV) business. The funds add on to the $25 million Series A round in October 2021 that was led by Breakthrough Energy Ventures.
The company has signed contracts with four automakers, with a pipeline of 25GWh of energy storage over five years. This equates to 300,000 electric vehicles, said ONE.
ONE said the latest round of funding will help it begin the site selection process for its first US-based battery factory. The company said it will also accelerate its research and development in Michigan and San Francisco.
This January, ONE demonstrated the strength of its batteries, creating a proof-of-concept device with 732 miles of range. In another pilot, the company outfitted a Tesla Model S with an experimental battery with 203.7kWh and an energy density of 416Wh/L. The battery was able to power the Model S at 55mph for 882 miles on a single charge, as validated by third party testing.
“ONE’s core principles of doubling the range, decreasing the cost of the batteries and creating a local supply chain, resonated strongly with us at BMW i Ventures,” said Baris Guzel, partner at BMW i Ventures. “Today’s announcement of ONE’s battery factory in the US is an important step for the larger electric vehicle value chain, and ONE has the potential to truly transform the ecosystem.”
The company builds lithium-ferro-phosphate batteries, which forego the need for earth-rare cobalt, said ONE. It currently has two proof-of-concept battery models; the Aries, and the larger Gemini, which was used in the Tesla demonstration.
ONE said it will begin Aries production in late 2022, and will demonstrate a production-level prototype of Gemini in 2023.
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Could it be feasible to add a second easy to connect second battery for long trips? Even a rent a battery system, or exchange a battery, like with 5 gallon propane tanks. A once every few years longer trip seems to stop many from considering battery powered cars.
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