Outstanding performance: VARTA® AGM batteries by Clarios get the best out of electric vehicles

Source: press release, 13 September 2022

Clarios’ AGM battery technology is suitable for all current and future car types
Clarios’ AGM battery technology is suitable for all current and future car types (illustration: Clarios)

The EU’s objective is to reduce CO2 emissions from vehicles by 40% by 2030 compared to 2021. As a result, carmakers are forced to produce zero-emission vehicles and vehicles with emissions below 50 g/km of CO2. That’s why, according to an estimate by the Vienna Institute for Advanced Studies (IHS), almost a third of newly registered vehicles will be all-electric as early as 2025. By 2030, hybrid and battery electric vehicles will already account for more than half of new registrations in Europe. As Europe’s car fleet electrifies, VARTA is well positioned with its xEV portfolio, which has been expanded to include new types of batteries.

In electric vehicles, the high-voltage Li-ion battery supplies the drivetrain. The 12-volt battery takes care of the internal 12-volt electrical system with its comfort and safety functions. It ensures that an electric vehicle not only functions while driving, but also when the vehicle is parked, and the high-voltage battery is deactivated. For example, the 12-volt battery makes sure that the vehicle can be locked and unlocked, and also enables the alarm system and “over-the-air-updates” to function when the vehicle is parked. On the road, it ensures that the lights, brakes, and steering work properly, even if the high-voltage system suddenly fails during operation and the vehicle has to be stopped safely.

In order to do this, electric cars need reliable and more capable 12-volt batteries to enable constant charge and discharge cycles. “The wrong selection of battery technology may not be able to cope with the vehicle’s power requirements, which can lead to early failures,” warns Manuel Hammermann. “That’s why original batteries must be replaced with products that meet the same requirements.” VARTA AGM xEV batteries, designed specifically for electric vehicles, meet the requirements of original equipment manufacturers. Clarios, with its VARTA brand, is the world’s leading battery manufacturer and number one original equipment supplier for all major car and commercial vehicle manufacturers such as Mercedes-Benz, Volkswagen Group, and BMW. Six out of ten new vehicles in Europe are equipped with a Clarios battery. The robust design of VARTA AGM xEV batteries allows them to fulfill current and even future requirements of electric and hybrid vehicles.

Versatile solutions for extremely demanding applications
In addition to AGM xEV batteries, Clarios has a complete low-voltage portfolio, including li-ion solutions on hand for extremely demanding applications. These low-voltage lithium-ion solutions can manage various, high electrical loads and usage demands. They provide exceptional charge acceptance and cyclability, enabling greater battery utilisation and energy throughput for long life. Our low-voltage solutions can enable advanced Start-Stop powertrains that deliver up to 8% fuel economy and mild-hybrid powertrains that deliver greater than 15% improvement as compared to conventional vehicles.

The complete VARTA xEV portfolio already covers 97% of the vehicles falling in the xEV segment and the range will be extended according to market needs and developments. Thus, Clarios is xEV ready with a full portfolio of low-voltage batteries that work in perfect tandem with high-voltage battery, helping ensure optimal vehicle performance, constant power and crucial safety functionality for full hybrids, plug-in hybrids, battery as well as fuel cell electric vehicles.

Battery knowledge and expertise for professionals
Workshops are already facing an increasing number of electric vehicles. This is because the 12-volt batteries of the first generations of hybrid and battery electric vehicles are more frequently coming to the end of their life cycle and needing to be replaced. This means additional challenges for workshops due to the different maintenance routines that apply to electric vehicles. “12-volt batteries will remain a service part in EVs, in a very similar way as with combustion engine vehicles,” explains Manuel Hammermann, Sr. Specialist Technical Support and Services from Clarios, the manufacturer of VARTA batteries. “These can still be replaced by independent workshops. The 12-volt battery is a safety-relevant component in the vehicle.” Due to the market’s continual evolution and scaling up, low-voltage technologies vary by manufacturer and may even change within the same model type from one year to another. “That’s why expertise is needed. Workshops need to be trained to maintain electric vehicles. This ensures the right battery is selected for the vehicle and allows crucial power and safety functions to operate properly, providing their customers with the best possible service.”

But many workshops are not yet prepared for the maintenance of electric vehicles. They can count on VARTA’s expertise and support: “With our new training program ‘Batteries – Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow’, they will be equipped with the proper knowledge to face current and future needs,” promises Ulrich Germann, Manager Training and Technical Support at Clarios. As vehicle technology continues to develop, Clarios is constantly adapting its VARTA training programs to ensure workshops are always up to date. For example, the batteries in electric vehicles can be hidden in various places, creating difficulty for mechanics to locate them. They can find all the necessary information about the battery’s location in the VARTA Partner Portal – along with important tips for replacement. The VARTA Partner Portal database now covers 99.8% of the European car fleet, including nearly all electric and hybrid vehicles with AGM advanced battery technology.