February Power Battery: Why XWD?

Author: Feng Jingang

In February, the news about many car companies participating in the private offering of Xinwanda’s subsidiaries was widely interpreted as meaning that the car companies intended to support Xinwanda in order to break away from CATL. However, this interpretation is one-sided.

First of all, it is common practice in the industry for car companies to increase their supply of batteries, and it has no special connection with breaking away from anyone.

What sparked much discussion this time was the collective private placement of the three new forces led by WmAuto Xiaoli. Starting from scratch and initially using the best batteries is understandable, but with the growth of the scale, it is inevitable to use multiple battery suppliers. However, the problem is that the premise of using multiple battery suppliers is that car companies have the ability to handle various types of batteries from different brands. Otherwise, disasters may occur, and such cases are not uncommon. In short, multiple suppliers are an inevitable trend, but caution is also needed. This is a major challenge currently facing new forces.

Secondly, being recognized by many manufacturers indicates that Xinwanda has some strength, but it will take some time to compete head-on with CATL.

From the changes in the monthly installation volume of domestic power batteries, it can be seen that since July last year, Xinwanda’s installation volume has increased significantly, from tens of megawatt-hours to several hundred megawatt-hours. However, compared with the installation volume of thousands or tens of thousands of megawatt-hours of CATL, the gap is significant. Behind the differences in data are not only macro factors such as battery production capacity and price, but also various internal factors such as technical parameters and quality control. Therefore, it is normal for consumers to have objections to the supply of batteries from new forces.

Finally, CATL has been eliminated for many years, but it still stands there, which is a manifestation of strength and the fundamental basis for maintaining normal supply and demand. It has no connection with the “breakaway theory”.

If you have been observing the power battery industry for a long time, you will find that Xinwanda’s story is always so familiar. Yes, two years ago, domestic and foreign car companies, including Mercedes-Benz and Volkswagen, intended to support second-line power battery manufacturers such as Funeng and Guoxuan High-tech in order to break away from CATL. But the result is that not only did they fail to break away from CATL, but they further strengthened their ties with it, and even caused many jokes, such as Daimler openly accusing Funeng’s batteries of being a disaster… So, will Xinwanda be the next Funeng?

The development of electric vehicles based on lithium-ion power batteries has only been more than ten years, and it is difficult to say that all aspects of technology are fully mature. It is difficult to achieve easy control like the intelligent phone industry chain. For new energy vehicle brands, there are not many technological accumulations, and battery technology subordinated to electrochemistry is even more unfamiliar territory. To produce excellent products, researching and revering battery technology is the foundation. Whether Xinwanda can carry the banner still needs more facts to verify, and it cannot be easily achieved simply by shouting slogans.


This article is a translation by ChatGPT of a Chinese report from 42HOW. If you have any questions about it, please email bd@42how.com.