Electric Car Battery Cost

Future Cost Estimate

Pike Research in 2012 completed a study forecasting EV Li-Ion battery prices to drop by one-third by 2017 to around $523 per kWh. That has already been exceeded. The predicted drop appears to be mainly due to market forces as the EV segment grows. Pike predicts the EV battery market will grow from $2 billion in 2011 to $14.6 billion in 2017.

The Envia Effect

Besides market forces, we notice that new technology will also very likely drop battery
prices. The Envia Battery promises to more than double Li-Ion storage capacity while cutting weight and cost in half. Wow, sounds great. Whether or not full production at reduced price is possible, the trend toward more efficient batteries is clear. IBM for example is working on similar storage devices, as are other companies. Stay tuned.

In the Meantime DIY Battery Pack Cost Estimates

One way is to look at the price per unit. The unit in the table below is the cell. These cells are LiFePo4 batteries, 3.2-3.4 Volts per cell, from 100-260 AH per cell. Cells are sold to DIY EVers for battery pack construction. The battery management systems and chargers required to maintain the cells are not included in the costs.

The electric car battery cost is the most expensive part of the car. If you buy lead acid batteries, they may be cheaper up front, but you have to replace then 4 times or more as often as Li-Ion type batteries, and they do not hold as much charge.

EV battery prices have fallen more than forecast and are approaching
$300 per kWh.

The company Hybrid Industries offers a 24 kWh Nissan Leaf battery upgrade for $6,500 or $270 per kWh.

The 2017 Chevy Bolt specifies a 60 kWh battery pack for a car priced at $30,000 after incentives.

Electricity storage per kWh drops as
the price per kWh drops: $300 / kwh battery : 33 cents / kwh
$200 / kwh battery : 22 cent / kwh
$150 / kwh battery : 17 cent / kwh
$100 / kwh battery : 11 cent / kwh

Li-Ion Recent History

EV battery prices have declined radically since 2008. In the fall of 2015, GM says its batteries
cost $145 per kWh.

In 2013, Li-Ion battery packs cost from around $500 up to $900 USD per Kilowatt hour. On average a 24 kWh battery pack could cost you around $17,000 or so. Some reports suggest that Nissan managed to manufacture battery packs for the Leaf for about $375 per kWh.

Replacement (installed) cost for the 53 kWh Tesla Roadster battery pack ran around $36,000. That came to around $679 per kWh.

Ford reported that its 23 kWh packs cost from $12,000 - $15,000: $600/kWh avg.