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Leapmotor will have the world’s first electric car with a battery integrated into the chassis

There are more and more electric car manufacturers from China. And not because they are many, they stop being sophisticated; on the contrary. Leapmotor is one of many Chinese manufacturers that are being born in the heat of the electric car and, although it is not well known at the moment, it has announced a pioneering technology in its next electric car: the battery integrated in the chassis, or CTC for its acronym in English.

Leapmotor is yet another player on the electric car board, and it wants to hit the table with its next car. Founded in 2015, the company has launched and currently markets three different models. He is already preparing the fourth, which will be his flagship, his most important model: the Leapmotor C01. An electric sedan that will use cell-to-chassis technology, becoming the first electric car in the world to have a battery of this type.

Cell-to-chassis technology (translated as ‘cell to chassis’) integrates the battery and the vehicle chassis in the same architecture, thus eliminating the typical arrangement of a separately installed battery pack, anchored to the chassis. This system simplifies the design and manufacturing process of the entire lower part of the vehicle chassis. Leapmotor has also announced that it will share this technology freely with other interested parties (open-source).

By dispensing with the typical battery structure, improvements are made on several fronts. On the one hand, the weight of the set is reduced by up to 20% and space is gained. According to the brand, this technology allows to gain 10 mm in height inside the passenger compartment compared to a conventional battery and offers up to 14.5% more space to fit more cells. This, together with the help of a more efficient battery management system, allows autonomy to be increased by 10%, according to the manufacturer.

battery-leapmotor-c01
The integrated or structural battery reduces weight by up to 20% and improves space in the cabin.

The advantages do not end there: the CTC battery has better sealing compared to conventional batteries, increases the torsional rigidity of the vehicle by 25% and offers lower levels of noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) when driving. Of course, safety is guaranteed in the same way, which means being resistant to sharp impacts and crushing and dissipating heat well.

According to Leapmotor, the technology is currently supports 400kW ultra-fast charging and will support 800V high-voltage platforms in the future. With these figures, the Leapmotor C01 will be able to achieve 200 kilometers of autonomy in about five minutes. Let us remember that, although it may seem like one more of many failed projects, the company in question manufactured more than 43,700 electric cars last year (443% more than in 2020). The company hopes to achieve a 10% market share in China by 2025, an undoubtedly ambitious figure.

CTC (cell-to-chassis) technology should not be confused with CTP (cell-to-pack). This latest technology simplifies the typical layout by eliminating modular layout, which in turn reduces the wiring required. CATL has recently started using module-free technology in its new third-generation batteries, although it does not plan to bring CTC technology into production until well into the second half of this decade.

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