Fiat 500e Is First Electric Vehicle to Feature Bosch Battery Pack

By · December 14, 2012

Fiat 500e

The electric Fiat 500e will be the first of what's sure to eventually be dozens of vehicles to feature a Bosch battery pack.

Effective immediately, SB LiMotive Germany GmbH and Cobasys of Orion Township, Mich., will be incorporated into the Bosch automotive group as a wholly owned subsidiary operating under Robert Bosch Battery Systems.

Bosch intends to leverage the knowledge and capabilities of battery makers SB LiMotive and Cobasys, as well as cell fabrication experts Samsung SDI to accelerate its lithium-ion automotive battery activities.

The first vehicle to feature a Bosch Battery Systems pack will be the upcoming all-electric Fiat 500e. The 500e is scheduled to enter production in 2013, but will be a limited production vehicle that Fiat seems to show nearly no interest in making.

Robert Bosch Battery Systems will concentrate on all aspects of battery systems for plug-in vehicles, including energy storage, battery management and electronic integration. Bosch will also have unlimited access to all patents developed by the former joint venture partners (SB LiMotive and Cobasys).

This move to establish a dedicated lithium-ion automotive battery division is in anticipation of a sharp increase in demand for electric and plug-in hybrid vehicle. Bosch says this spike in demand will come by 2020.

Bosch spends $522.6 million per year for electromobility and employs 1,100 workers in this field. Its major electromobility sites are located in Germany, the U.S. and China.


· Spec (not verified) · 5 years ago

Maybe that is why they are going to lose so much money on it. Perhaps other suppliers who have been in the field for a while can provide better batteries at lower prices.

· · 5 years ago

"Bosch spends $522.6 billion per year"

I'm sure that is not correct !

· · 5 years ago

Yes, I'm sure Eric meant $522.6 million, not billion.

Regarding the battery: this is what Chrysler/Fiat had to say about it recently . . .

"FIAT 500e buyers, empowerment starts with a 24 kWh lithium-ion battery that energizes a 111 horsepower (83 kW), permanent-magnet, three-phase synchronous drive-motor. Dubbed "e-Drive" and showcased by a studded, logo-adorned "engine cover," it generates 147 lb.-ft. (200 N•m) of peak torque – all of which is available at tip-in."

"The high-voltage battery is housed in the floor of the 500e. It serves both the eDrive motor and vehicle systems, such as HVAC and other electrical accessories tied to the 12-volt battery. Comprising 97 individual cells, the battery features a power-management system designed to monitor and adjust current, cell voltage and operating temperature – conditions that are critical to safety and life expectancy.

A stout capacity to handle charge/discharge cycles is backed by an eight-year warranty, which covers the entire battery.

The battery's thermal-management system maintains optimal operating temperatures, which maximizes driving range and minimizes recharging times – less than 4 hours with its Level 2 (240-volt) on-board charging module (OBCM) and 24 hours via Level 1 (120-volt) when fully depleted.

The system supplements passive cooling by circulating through the high-voltage battery a blend of ethylene glycol and corrosion inhibitors. This ensures consistent cell-to-cell temperature and boosts battery life."

Only 97 cells for a a 24kWh pack? I'd like to see some pictures of the cells and how they are configured into the car's chassis.

· · 5 years ago


Interesting. Assuming idntical efficiencies (a good asumption in the Volt, horrible in the Tesla Roadster and Rav4EV, where 120 volt charging efficiency is HORRIBLE), the thing charges more than 6 times faster at 240. So assuming thats 30 amps 240, does the thing draw under 10 amps at 120?

· · 5 years ago

Correct. That's $522.6 million not billion...Thanks for catching and pointing out the error.

· · 5 years ago

Benjamin: These are the same cells in my ActiveE and what will be used in the upcoming BMW electrics. Here is a picture of the battery compartment of the i3 from my blog:
You can also search "BMW i3 drive module", "BMW i3 batteries", or "SB-Limotive" for better pictures of them.

· · 5 years ago

Thanks, Tom, for that battery photo link. And yeah, Bill, it appears that Fiat is allowing as quick as charging as possible via Level 2. Note that they don't mention any sort of Level 3 charging on the 500e, even though they are almost certainly licensed to use the DC J1772 Combo standard, if they wanted to.

· · 5 years ago

@Benjamin Nead,
it appears that Fiat is allowing as quick as charging as possible via Level 2
Not exactly. There are Level 2 chargers deployed that can deliver 16 kW (240 V X 70 A). Teslas can use it.
A 4 hour charge of the Fiat500's 24 kWh battery would be about 6 kW which has become sort of the 'standard' Level 2 deployed but is far from the max or IMHO even a reasonable upper limit.
16 kW charging of a 24 kWhr pack would take about 1.5 hours.
Remember that nominal majority of the manufacturers reluctantly making EVs still insist on stunting this value by forcing us to glacial 3.3 or 6 kW charging. Those speeds make sense for home charging but not for opportunity charging or traveling charging.
Most of all, glacial 3.3 and 6 kW charging ensures a place for gasoline for the foreseeable future.

· · 5 years ago

Noted, ex-EV1. Given this, it's surprising that there is no mention of a J1772 Combo plug in the specs. Perhaps they assume they're not going to build enough of them to have it become a point of contention. :-(

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