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BMW, Rimac to partner on high-voltage batteries

European collaboration aims to challenge Asian dominance in the EV battery field

11 Apr 2024

BMW and Rimac have agreed to partner on high-voltage electric vehicle battery technology in a European collaboration that aims to challenge Asian dominance in the field.


Rimac, a Croatian electric hypercar manufacturer owned 45 per cent by Porsche, is expanding its reach as a supplier of battery systems and powertrain components to other OEMs, with the aim of producing 100,000 battery units per annum by 2026.


BMW declined to comment specifically on the deal, saying only that the long-term partnerships is a sign that Rimac is transitioning from a niche manufacturer to a high-volume Tier 1 supplier.


It is understood BMW will release more details about what form the partnership with Rimac will take, as well as its scope and content, at a later stage. The German brand expects half of its global sales to be full-electric models by the end of the decade. Last year that number reached 15 per cent.


BMW has its own battery research centre in Germany, but has left large-scale development to its partners, placing multi-billion-euro orders with CATL and EVE Energy to produce cells in both China and Europe.


It is not yet known which BMW models will benefit from the joint venture with Rimac, which is understood to amount to 40,000 units annually.


BMW chief financial officer Walter Mertl said, “The tipping point for the combustion engine was last year (2023)”.


The company delivered 2,555,341 vehicles globally in 2023, up 6.5 per cent on the year prior to set a new all-time high. Of that number, 376,183 units were all-electric cars (BEVs), representing 15 per cent of all sales.


In August (2023), Mr Mertl told Bloomberg that BMW is “investing more than originally planned in the global ramp-up of e-mobility” focusing on “new models, the electrification and digitisation of the vehicle fleet, and automated driving”.


At the start of this year, BMW announced a €650 million ($A1.1b) investment to transform its Munich factory to an all-electric production facility by the end of 2027.


“Future growth will primarily come from battery electric vehicles,” said Mr Mertl.


2023 European total vehicle sales mix by fuel type:


Battery Electric (BEV)


1,533,000 units approx.



1,428,000 units approx.

Hybrid Electric (HEV)


2,709,000 units approx.



3,706,500 units approx.

Plug-in Hybrid (PHEV)


808,500 units approx.



315,000 units approx.


With ACEA, Automotive News Europe and Fleet Europe

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