Stellantis NV CEO Carlos Tavares (left) and Ram CEO Mike Koval Jr. unveil the Ram 1500 Revolution all-electric concept truck at CES in Las Vegas. (Breana Noble/The Detroit News via Tribune News Service)
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The maker of Jeep SUVs, Ram pickup trucks and other vehicles on Jan. 9 said it has secured a supply of high-purity manganese sulfate monohydrate for electric vehicle batteries in a five-year agreement with Australian miner Element 25 Ltd.
Manganese is the key stabilizing ingredient in the battery’s cathode for nickel-manganese-cobalt chemistries, one of two Stellantis NV has said it will use in its all-electric vehicles.
Shipments of the total 49,604 tons (45 kilotons) secured from Element 25’s Butcherbird project in western Australia will begin in 2026 with options to extend the supply term and volumes. The company will process the mineral at a new facility in the United States. Stellantis in return will make an undisclosed equity investment in Element 25.
The agreement is binding, though it’s conditioned on the satisfactory completion of technical due diligence and a feasibility study, according to a news release.
The agreement, Stellantis CEO Carlos Tavares said in a statement, supports the automaker’s ambitions to achieve carbon net zero status in 2038. Stellantis says half of its U.S. sales will be all-electric by 2030, and it’s investing $35.5 billion into electrification and software by 2025.
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“Stellantis’ support for Element 25’s high purity battery-grade manganese sulfate project is a fantastic endorsement by one of the world’s largest automakers and validates our plans to become a globally significant long-term supplier of battery materials to meet growing global demand,” Just Brown, Element 25 managing director, said in a statement. “We are fully aligned with Stellantis’ decarbonization and electrification goals, which represent some of the most ambitious in the industry and have committed to reach agreed net zero carbon emission goals under this deal.”
Stellantis also has secured deals for lithium volumes for EV batteries that will go in cars, SUVs and trucks in North America and Europe. The company’s joint ventures have announced five battery plants, including two in North America in Windsor, Ontario, and Kokomo, Ind. Mark Stewart, Stellantis’ chief operating officer, said he expects a third for the continent will be announced in the second quarter.
“We really have to make sure that we’re getting that locked in,” he told The Detroit News on Jan. 6. “As we continue to look at both the (Inflation Reduction Act), the planning forecasts, and things seems to be very well aligned with 50%-plus BEV as we get to 2030, so that that third plant coming online in quarter four of ‘26 is a milestone.”
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