The EV industry, which has now remained in focus for some years as it is trying to take off from the ground, has numerous start-ups involved in it. Now, the San Francisco-based start-up, Ample, is turning into a main contender in the battery swapping industry posing stern competition to the Shanghai-based Nio EV maker.
Ars Technica reported that the start-up had launched its brand new EV battery swapping tech in March this year. In this process, the EV travels to its designated spot in the city and swaps its drained battery for a fully charged one taking up only two parking spots. The complete process takes no more than 10 minutes.
However, one big problem is that the Ample, before going mainstream has to convince the battery makers to customise batteries for swapping. Therefore, they should have adopters and not battery packs to assist in the swapping mechanism. The adopter plates will then be fitted into the Ample-made battery modules for quick and time-saving swaps.
The Verge has reported that the Ample has identified fleets of vehicles as their initial targets and not individual automakers. They are working with fleets of Uber in the Bay Area of San Francisco. Battery swapping in vehicles such as Nissan Leaf and Kia Niro is in progress already. The Ample team has also managed to raise a whopping 160 million dollars for its battery swapping tech.
Even though there are a lot of positives. Is the Ample doing enough to ensure that the battery swapping tech takes off steadily in the USA?
Ample is aiming to create a change of mind for the customers in the USA. The most important requirement of the start-up is to get EV automakers onboard like China’s Nio. The Ample has no easy road to tread in the near future as the negative reviews around the EV battery swapping are still solid. Only time will tell how this shapes up.