PARIS (Reuters) – Stellantis announced on Thursday that it is investing in the American innovative materials start-up Lyten in order to expand its range of electric vehicle battery technologies to lithium-sulphur.

“Stellantis is exploring all battery technologies to meet the diverse needs of its broad customer base,” the automaker born out of the merger between PSA and FCA said in a statement.

During a press conference call, Oliver Gross, head of electrification and electricity storage within the group, underlined that the choice fell on a technology that could be deployed within the framework of the strategic objectives of the “Dare forward 2030”.

“That means for sure in the decade, which is not that far in the future,” he added.

The financial terms of the agreement, made through the fund Stellantis Ventures, have not been specified.

Founded in 2015 and based in San Jose, Calif., Lyten claims lithium-sulfur has an energy density more than twice that of lithium-ion, the currently ultra-dominant technology for electric vehicles.

In addition to the associated weight gain, the lithium-sulfur battery – which makes it possible to do without nickel, cobalt or manganese – also ensures greater independence in supplies, adds Lyten, since some of the raw materials can be produced locally, in North America and Europe.

Lyten’s products will also help manufacturers take advantage of planned government incentives to reduce greenhouse gases in these two regions, such as the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) in the United States, the two companies added.

Stellantis, owner of 14 brands including Peugeot, Fiat, Jeep and Ram, is aiming for carbon neutrality by 2038. It also expects battery electric vehicles to account for 100% of its car sales in Europe, and 50% of its sales cars and light trucks in the United States by 2030.

(Gilles Guillaume report, with Giulio Piovaccari in Milan, edited by Blandine Hénault)

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