Gaining popularity in recent years due to their increased efficiency and environmentally friendly nature, electric cars have become a top gear in the vehicle market.
However, many still have questions about the working principle of electric cars and what components they require most to perform. Also, enthusiasts often wonder if electric cars have backup batteries.
Another common question asked is “How many batteries do electric cars have?” we’d explore the battery systems used in electric cars and provide a general overview of how they function.
Here’s the Answer to How Many Batteries Electric Cars Have:
The number of batteries in an electric car depends on the model and manufacturer. However, most electric cars have a large battery pack consisting of multiple smaller battery cells which are fused in thousands of compartments called modules.
What Are Some Examples of Electric Cars and Their Battery Cell Types?
For example, the Tesla Model S, Chevrolet Bolt, Nissan Leaf, and Lucid Air all have a battery pack that consists of thousands of individual lithium-ion cells.
However, other electric cars such as Ford Focus Electric, Volkswagen e-Golf, and Hongqi E-HS9 all have fewer battery cells but still have a single battery pack that is made up of these small cells.
The number of cells, modules, and size of the lithium-ion battery can vary depending on the make and model of the electric car.
In general, most electric vehicles today use hundreds or thousands of battery cells to create a large enough capacity to provide sufficient range per charge.
Meanwhile, you may also be wondering who owns the battery in an electric car.
Do Electric Cars Use One Big Battery or Several?
You’ve probably also wondered how big batteries are on electric cars.
Typically, electric cars use several smaller batteries that are connected in cells (cylindrical, prismatic, and pouch) to form a larger battery system.
Each battery module contains many individual battery cells, typically lithium-ion batteries, which are connected in series and parallel configurations to create the desired voltage and capacity.
The number of battery modules and their arrangement in an electric car can vary depending on the specific model and requirement.
For instance, Tesla’s Model S, 3, X, and Y, battery system or Energy Storage System comprises 6,831 individual Li-ion cylindrical cells which are roughly the size of a storage trunk and weigh about 900 pounds.
Being arranged cylindrically, it needs no additional mechanism to control pressure change during charging and discharging.
The BMW’s i3, iX3, i4, and iX single battery pack consists of 8 modules; each module has 12 cells in series, which makes a total of 96 cells all arranged in a prismatic order.
Another model whose battery cells are arranged in a prismatic order is the Volkswagen ID.3, ID.4, and e-Golf where each compartment holds a battery module comprising 24 cells for its largest battery pack and 14 cells for its smallest.
Nissan’s LEAF, Hyper mini, ARIYA, and TAMA Lithium-ion batteries consist of 8 metal pouch cells in each of its 48 modules. All models of Chevrolet and Renault also have pouch cells, which are made up of fewer than 1,000 cells.
Using multiple battery modules allows for flexibility in the design of an electric car’s battery system.
For example, some electric car manufacturers may offer different battery pack sizes with different numbers of modules and cells, allowing customers to choose the battery system that best fits their needs and budget.
What Electric Car Has the Most Batteries?
The electric car with the most battery cells is the GMC Hummer EV Pickup Edition 1, GMC Hummer EV Pickup EV2x, and GMC Hummer EV Pickup EV3x, all of which have a battery capacity of 212 kWh.
The GMC Hummer EV model boasts of an impressive 24 battery modules and an undisclosed number of battery cells which is capable of storing 212 kWh of energy, allowing them to travel up to 329 miles on a single charge
An average electric car has a battery capacity of around 60 kWh with a range of 150-200 miles, but the GMC Hummer EV model doubles that of an average electric vehicle, providing it with an unparalleled advantage when it comes to range and power
The range of the GMC Hummer EV model is not the only factor that sets it apart from other electric cars but also the fact that its battery cells are larger and more efficient.
It’s also worth noting that the battery cells in the GMC Hummer EV model have a higher energy density, which allows further travel on a single charge whilst taking up less space due to their pouch style.
A question to consider is “Why does the number of batteries matter?” For electric cars, a larger battery allows longer driving ranges, quicker charging time, faster acceleration, and an even distribution of weight, resulting in better handling and stability.
Another model of an electric car with impressive batteries is the Tesla Roadster, which comprises 6,831 individual lithium-ion battery cells, has a capacity of 200 kWh, and can travel up to 313 miles on a single charge.
Another example is the Rivian R1T Quad-Motor AWD Max Pack, which is comprised of 7,776 cylindrical LFP battery cells, has a capacity of 170 kWh, and can travel from 314 to 328 miles on a single charge.
Is It an Advantage To Have Several Batteries?
Usually, every electric vehicle comes with a 12-volt lead acid battery which powers electrical components, such as
- Power windows, and
- Other electronic control units
With the primary function of powering all electrical equipment and control systems, this battery is charged via a DC-DC converter by the vehicle’s high-voltage battery pack.
Having several high-voltage batteries made from mostly lithium-ion arranged in cells is an advantage in electric cars.
More batteries in electric cars mean more
- Power-to-weight ratio
- High energy efficiency
- Redundancy, and
- Good high-temperature performance
Having several batteries in an electric car also means that the vehicle can travel longer distances on a single charge due to an extended storage capacity.
However, that may not always be the case since more weight reduces efficiency.
Another point worth noting is that with several batteries, the electric car can be charged faster and more efficiently.
Most importantly, if one battery cell in the battery pack fails or loses its charge, the other batteries would keep the car running up until it can be recharged or serviced.
However, having a large battery pack that consists of multiple battery cells can increase the weight and the cost of the car. Therefore, it’s important to strike a balance between range, performance, and cost.
Also, batteries in electric cars also have common problems of their own.
The number of batteries in any electric car plays a vital role in determining its range and charging time/speed.
In the same vein, electric car manufacturers are viciously working to improve battery technology to ensure electric cars are more efficient and practical for everyday use.
As more drivers switch to electric cars constantly, it’s pretty thrilling to see what advancements in battery technology will be made in the future.