The UK government is investing heavily into companies looking to develop new battery and electric vehicle technologies, to help switch the automotive industry over to net-zero emissions as quickly as possible. This new funding program is set to invest a total of £91.7 million into various companies’ projects. One of which will be BMW’s research into long-range battery packs, capable of providing the sorts of ranges found in internal combustion engine cars.
For this endeavor, the UK government will invest £26.2 into BMW UK’s research project. Autocar recently spoke with BMW Motorsport R&D boss Andreas Löhrke about this project, who said “This is a really exciting opportunity to collaborate with world-leading companies to develop high-tech battery technology. It strengthens our UK partner base and safeguards and extends our research and design center.”
As of now, there’s no word on exactly what sort of tech BMW is working on or how it plans on making batteries that can provide ICE-like range. However, we do know that BMW is investing heavily into battery tech on its own. This new program only helps BMW by increasing funding and allowing the brand to collaborate with other brands as well.
For instance, Birmingham-based Project Celeritas is working on some incredibly fast-charging battery technology, claimed to be able to charge in just 12 minutes. There’s also Reecorner, which is trying to design small-to-medium commercial EVs with all of their powertrain, steering, braking, and suspension components to fit in the wheel wells, thus offering superior packaging. The Brunel Project is looking to develop a hydrogen-powered engine for long-range commercial vehicles.
Not only does the additional funding help BMW work on new ways to increase battery range but the collaboration with these other brands will help BMW improve its electric cars across the board. It’s an exciting and interesting time, hopefully some really cool cars and tech come from it sooner than later.