Ferrari teams up with SK On on battery tech

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Ferrari and battery supplier SK On will partner on advanced battery cell technology, the two companies announced Tuesday.

SK On has been supplying batteries to Ferrari since 2019, initially for the SF90 Stradale plug-in hybrid and its open-top SF90 Spider variant, and then for the 296 GTB and 296 GTS plug-in hybrids. The two companies have now signed a memorandum of understanding to “explore new possibilities and potential solutions” in battery-cell tech.

Ferrari SF90 Stradale

A memorandum of understanding is not the same as a product plan, but Ferrari will likely have more need for batteries in the future for both more plug-in hybrids and at least some all-electric models. The automaker is in the midst of launching 15 new models, including an EV, likely an SUV, due in 2025. Ferrari is expanding its factory to accommodate EV production.

A Ferrari patent filing that surfaced in late 2023 hinted that the automaker is working on in-wheel electric motors, although given the challenges companies like Lordstown Motors have had getting in-wheel motors into production, any future Ferrari EV may go with a more conventional design.

Ferrari 296 GTS Assetto Fiorano

Ferrari 296 GTS Assetto Fiorano

Another Ferrari patent filing for an “electric or hybrid sport car” suggested the automaker is also experimenting with a mid-mounted battery pack that would sit where an engine normally would. In this filing, Ferrari discussed mounting battery modules on a subframe-like structure that could be bolted to the chassis.

CEO Benedetto Vigna said in an interview with CNBC Tuesday that Ferrari’s upcoming EV will deliver the same “unique” experience as the automaker’s combustion models, adding that “electric cars are not silent.” So perhaps Ferrari will use some form of artificial sound generation, as in the 2025 Dodge Charger Daytona, to reach the requisite level of emotion.

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