The first mass-produced electric vehicle in China to use a sodium-ion battery has arrived, and JAC Group is shaking up the electric vehicle industry. The Yiwei-branded vehicle uses state-of-the-art sodium-ion cylindrical cells manufactured by HiNa Battery Technology. It is believed that this innovation will pose a challenge to the traditional hegemony of lithium-ion batteries in the electric vehicle industry.
The special characteristics of sodium-ion batteries are their deciding factor. The sodium-ion battery stands out due to its abundant raw material reserves, outstanding performance at low temperatures, improved conductivity, ability to charge quickly, and possible higher energy density. An important component in the expansion of the electric vehicle market is the enhancement of transportation safety.
The world’s first mass-produced vehicle equipped with sodium-ion batteries was delivered to eager customers on January 5, 2024, by Yiwei, a new energy vehicle brand under JAC Group.
Using HiNA Battery’s 32140 sodium-ion cylindrical cells, this vehicle is the sub-$10,000 sodium-ion variant of the Huaxianzi (meaning “Flower Fairy”) model. These cells, which follow the technological path of copper-based layered oxide plus hard carbon, have an energy density exceeding 140 Wh/kg and a capacity of 12 Ah.
A honeycomb battery safety structure is integrated into the Huaxianzi to ensure the utmost safety. Achieving a CLTC-rated range of 143 miles with energy consumption approaching 10 kWh per 100km is possible thanks to its total battery pack capacity of 23.2 kWh. With capacity retention of more than 92% even at -20°C, sodium-ion batteries practically eradicate winter range degradation and excel in low-temperature environments.
The chairman of GAC Group’s Yiwei Technology, Xia Shunli, thinks that sodium-ion batteries could be a good alternative to lithium-ion phosphate batteries because they are both affordable and effective.
The JAC Group-owned Yiwei brand is eager to see what the future holds. The second part of the year will see the launch of a sodium-ion variant with an even larger range of 186 miles. It is Yiwei’s goal to hasten the commercialization of sodium-ion batteries and encourage the broad use of EVs.