The same cells from LG Energy Solution are in the Chevy Bolt EV.
We are still waiting for an official explanation about what caused the fires of the Hyundai Kona Electric and also of the Chevrolet Bolt EV. Both cars use LG Energy Solution cells in their battery packs. Predictably – what else could it be? – a report from the Korean media said Hyundai had found the fires’ cause: defective cells from the supplier.
The news came from the Korean website NewDaily. According to the article, “a serious defect was found on the lithium-ion battery supplied by LG Energy Solution,” but it does not mention exactly which. NewDaily would have learned that from an industry insider who is also not identified.
The report presents quite some details. Hyundai would have found the issue at its Namyang Research Center. On February 10, it would have asked an LG Energy Solution executive to check the problem. This LG employee would have apologized to Hyundai on his company’s behalf.
LG Energy Solution would be coordinating with the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, and Transport to disclose the investigation’s results. This Korean government department would also have taken part in trying to discover why so many cars caught fire in the country. There were cases reported in Canada and Austria as well.
The Korean supplier – which recently won a dispute with SK Innovations in the US – would be preparing countermeasures to avoid that new batteries have the issue and correct it in affected battery packs. Curiously, Kia uses cells from SK Innovations in similar battery packs and had no fire issues reported so far.
NewDaily mentions that an official said LG Energy Solution would probably have to replace all affected battery packs in the world when the ministry officially talks about the causes. More than 77,000 cars would have been affected.
Business Korea would have contacted the Korean supplier, which denies the battery defect. However, it has confirmed it was at Hyundai’s Namyang Research Center. The plot thickens: although LG Energy Solution refuses the reports are factual, it would be already planning to seek compensation from its battery separator supplier. Rumor has it that this is the cause of the fires, and LG would go after that supplier if that is really the case. We have no idea who would supply these battery components to LG. If you do, please let us know.
Whatever the explanation for the fires is, it seems we are closer to an official one for two recalls at once. Affected customers have already waited more time than it would be reasonable for some peace of mind.
Source:NewDaily via Business Korea
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