Battery pack upgrade

Aptera Community Aptera Discussions Battery pack upgrade

Aptera Community Aptera Discussions Battery pack upgrade

  • Battery pack upgrade

     Dylan Dobbyn updated 3 weeks, 1 day ago 51 Members · 91 Posts
  • Joey Lao

    Member
    September 12, 2021 at 7:37 pm

    Can the battery packs be upgraded? Say you buy a 400 mile Aptera and later want to get 600 miles.

    • This discussion was modified 4 months, 2 weeks ago by  Gabriel Kemeny.
    • This discussion was modified 4 months, 2 weeks ago by  Gabriel Kemeny.
  • kerbe2705

    Member
    September 12, 2021 at 8:58 pm

    We won’t know until the vehicle is actually produced but, considering that no other EV has this capability, I’d seriously doubt it.

  • Riley …

    Member
    September 13, 2021 at 5:52 am

    Not easily, if you want to upgrade to a larger pack several years down the road that may be possible. Aptera has to design a completly new pack for every size pack they put into the car. That’s why they will be selling the 400 mile first as it is the right balence of profit and eas of design.

  • Joshua Rosen

    Member
    September 13, 2021 at 6:27 am

    I can’t imagine it would be cost effective given that the battery pack is by far the most expensive component in the car. Certainly the best option for a new pack would be to trade the car in on a newer model. As for used packs, Nissan Leafs have been upgrade to bigger packs when their batteries were replaced, but that’s always with a pack from a wreaked Leaf. The cost of a new battery pack for a Leaf is more than the car is worth.

  • Cindy2 Poling2

    Member
    September 16, 2021 at 4:13 pm

    Yes – wondering how easy is it to switch these batteries out. Is this something that customer can do on their own? Or is this a service center type of thing?

  • Michael Jarvis

    Member
    November 8, 2021 at 7:28 am

    Will the battery pack(s) be a consumer upgradable/expandable option? If I purchased a 250 mile version, could I add battery packs in the future?

    • This reply was modified 4 months, 3 weeks ago by  Wyatt Andrews.
    • This reply was modified 4 months, 2 weeks ago by  John Trotter. Reason: Title expanded for search clarity
    • This reply was modified 4 months, 2 weeks ago by  Gabriel Kemeny.
  • Peter Jorgensen

    Member
    November 8, 2021 at 10:10 am

    They said probably not – however that may change as they enter production. I suspect it may be easier to go from 250 to 400 vs from 600 to 1000.

  • GLENN ZAJIC

    Member
    November 8, 2021 at 6:46 pm

    I believe an Aptera person said this would be difficult. It kind of bumps up against their right to repair policy though. It may be that the access to this area is no longer available once the top is bonded to the bottom. I think eventually this will get addressed as new battery technology will make us all want to upgrade in years that follow (solid state?). Even without that though, I wonder if there is more bracing ‘in the pan’ area for different sizes of battery configurations. That is the only way I understand why they keep the payload the same for all battery variants.

    • Harry Parker

      Moderator
      November 8, 2021 at 7:37 pm

      My understanding is that physical limitations make adding hundreds of pounds more battery to an existing Aptera difficult. I imagine the suspension will need to change for those extra hundreds of pounds. (Going from 60 KWH to 100 KWH adds about 400 pounds.) I remember reading at some point that the ~1000 pound 100 KWH battery may need a modified, slightly bulkier body to fit into as well.

  • kerbe2705

    Member
    November 8, 2021 at 8:06 pm

    None of the currently-available EVs offer this capability – much in the same way that you can’t easily swap-out the 10 gallon fuel tank in an ICE vehicle for one that holds 20 gallons.

  • Michael Jarvis

    Member
    November 9, 2021 at 8:18 am

    as for ICE machines, they have no need as the current infrastructure is built around them. But I’m only guessing at a large majority of the EV community and perhaps even more so of the ‘early adopters’ with Aptera are DIYers who would prefer the option of expanding range themselves or even upgrading to a newer technology as it would fit with not just the “right to repair” stance but also with the cradle-to-grave extension of reuse vs. recycle of the overall machine itself and getting rid of any planned obsolescence strategies of old school Detroit. I haven’t seen any demographic data on the people who have reservations or know if they are collecting it. Just a guess that it’s probably split between heavily with a large population of this type.

  • DON RASKY

    Member
    November 23, 2021 at 6:05 pm

    Does anyone know if the batteries that come with the Aptera can be upgraded? For example, if you order the 40 kWh battery can it eventually be upgraded to 60 or 100 kWh at a later date without costing more than the price differences between the pack sizes and labor? I figure it is unlikely but what a dreamy situation it would be to be able to upgrade the pack like dropping in a bigger gas tank. Dreaming.

  • Curtis Cibinel

    Member
    November 23, 2021 at 6:29 pm

    Unlikely. The suspension would need to be tailored to the pack weight as they would be about 750lb apart. No other ev has done this and this would be a huge feature.

  • John Malcom

    Member
    November 23, 2021 at 6:44 pm

    At a minimum battery control software would have to be modified to accommodate the new battery configuration and perhaps the battery control hardware switched out depending on how it is designed. that is in addition to the suspension mods mentioned by Curtis. An expensive proposition

  • kerbe2705

    Member
    November 23, 2021 at 6:51 pm

    Considering that the battery pack of most modern EVs is accounts for about half the cost of the vehicle might explain why there are NO EVs that offer “upgradable” packs. True, there are some replacement packs for certain vehicles (first gen Nissan Leaf) that offer a slightly larger capacity, but they can’t be considered as “upgrades”.

    There are precious few ICE automobiles that offer the ability to “drop in” a larger fuel tank, if any.

    That said, if one wants a higher-capacity battery pack at a later date it would, most likely, be more cost-effective to simply buy a different EV at that time.

  • George Hughes

    Member
    November 24, 2021 at 12:03 pm

    I think the Renault EV in France has exchangeable batteries and some additional European countries sell the EV and rent the battery monthly.

    The battery pack for the Aptera is a component that is brought to the assembly process like the other elements of an electric drive system.

    People are making the connection that modern EVs are more like computers on wheels than they are the Rube Goldberg mechanical devices designed to entertain.

    Using the computer analogy, it upgrading anything is kind of like adding something on a computer … lets say a graphics card. In the old days, you literally had to pull pins on the motherboard to disable whatever display port was native, you had to have a card that fit a standard but then you had to install the card as well as rewrite elements of the operating system. Now if you replaced your graphics card with another just like it, it would likely work as the drivers, etc. all ‘fit’ and were already installed.

    But if you didn’t have the drivers, no matter how compatible the hardware, it won’t work.

    Anyone with a laptop knows that if you break into the battery, you’ll find 2170 cells in most cases. Those are the same cells that I think Aptera may use but you’re not going to slip them into like you do ‘AA’s cells.

    So, the battery is but one element; there’s the suspension and other aspects of the set up as well as the electronics that will differ. The point is, either someday replacement batteries for an Aptera will be like a plug ‘n play graphics card that opens the door for more graphic options on desktop or an replacement battery in a specific case and of a particular design for a single laptop model that requires the replacement be the exact copy of the original down to its physical form factor …or it is designed to not work without re-engineering the entire laptop.

    Theoretically Aptera’s power case engineering could take either approach depending on their design criteria.

    What they have right now are form factors and a battery pack with specific inputs and outputs.

    Presumably, the form factor of the overall case, including elements like mass, exterior dimension’s, mounting brackets represents the physical ‘pack’ that, provided it can be connected and controlled by the existing controllers either naturally, because it emulates the current battery precisely or because it can install a software driver that makes it compatible, or it requires the replacement of the BMS or even main computer for an upgrade … if there are 1 million Apterea on the road, that market will be served.

    The overall multi-generational right-to-repair ethic that is growing around the ultra-sustainable Aptera will demand that kind of innovation provided production and sales hit the 1 million mark by 2030.

    Depending on incentives, which I think will follow further development of hydrogen fuel solutions, I fully expect a fuel cell powered Aptera with non-pressurized solid hydrogen storage that releases hydrogen with laser light.

    The realization of these options is based on the ability to push Apterea out the door as rapidly as possible.

  • Ron Ledohowski

    Member
    November 28, 2021 at 1:56 pm

    Nio “currently” has a battery swap option. They are also considering offering an option to lease the battery (like a subscription model) separate from the cost of the car. Benefit exists of taking advantage of future battery advances &/or upgrades. Battery degradation concerns become mute. I’d be confident enough to say that an OTA firmware upgrade is likely all that would be needed to accommodate any such (potential) battery “upgrade” or interest.

    I’m not convinced this is as complicated as it’s being made to sound. Extended, replacement battery packs have been available for phones and computers for some time. No upgrade to the phone, charger or firmware required to accommodate. I’ve done this often in the past and I liked it when the batteries were accessible vs. sealed. Last time I did was years ago as my last phones, incl. current (Samsung S21 Ultra 5G), meet my needs out of the Box. They usually came with a new back cover to accommodate. My Note3 had a 10,000mah Zero Lemon Battery way back when (the largest available). Yes, I walked around with a brick LOL but I have big hands and it provided great convenience, especially when away from chargers. I’ve also had a 6500mah battery on that same phone that was much slimmer. Remember, I believe the stock battery was 2200mah back then on that top model. Huge difference in added utility.

    Here’s one example I’ve used, as mentioned, but there are many others.

    https://zerolemon.com/

    Certainly there might be some weight considerations as well, “depending”. If the *suspension is set for the larger pack on all, this also becomes somewhat mute as well.

    In the end, everything depends on how things are thought out, and considered, in advance.

    *tweaked accordingly.

    P.S., if you haven’t guessed, my two Aptera’s have the max battery and solar packs. Designed in to be hidden &/or discrete. Added convenience with no regrets. Range anxiety? Nope. Off grid for a while? Sure. Potential to power a few accessories & things? Why not.

    I’ve never gone wrong on resale when I started off fully optioned, on any of my vehicles. Value is in the eye of the beholder.

    Aptera speaks VALUE, style, innovation & rationality in spades.

    Efficient over sufficient; I’m all in!

  • Markus Schmid

    Member
    November 28, 2021 at 6:21 pm

    Hi everybody, I’m new here.
    I’m glad to join this community and hopefully will be able to add something useful after having harvested quite a bit of information here.

    On topic:

    On a webinar uploaded on June 14. 2021, Steve Fambro said the following regarding battery upgrades:

    There is nothing I can say right now in beta about how that will go in the future.
    Obviously those important things everybody asks about them – wer’re mindful of them but I don’t have anything new to report.

    Source: https://youtu.be/0jM5-kqWok4?t=3295 (after minute 54:55)

    At least in the YT videos of Aptera Motors there either isn’t any update on this information or I have missed it.

    Besides the former considerations of forum members here regarding some more or less delicate technical questions you might keep in mind what Nathan Armstrong said on another webinar (video uploaded on April 1. 2021):

    […] and as we increase the size of the batteries we are only adding more weight to the same area, so we’re not adding packs anywhrere thet’s going to throw the weight off.
    So as the battery pack increases it just increases the weight but it doesn’t decrease safety or stability.

    Source: https://youtu.be/tx5ufCgRdVU?t=2477 (minute 41:17)

    If I understood correctly, due to consistent weight distribution (safety and stability) the batteries always have the same shape and dimensions but are packed more or less densely.

    I guess this would mean that IF at some time there would be offered battry upgrades, that the entire battery pack had to be replaced, such as “400 miles pack out; 600 miles pack in”, and not adding a “200 miles battery pack” to an existing “400 miles battery pack” in order to get a 600 miles range.
    I believe that such an exchange of the complete battery would not make much sense from an economical standpoint, and selling the “400 miles Aptera” while buying a new “600 miles” model would be the better choice.

  • GLENN ZAJIC

    Member
    November 29, 2021 at 1:39 pm

    It is a lot more than just adding a battery pack. There is the electronics and cooling system too. Possibly increasing the stiffness of suspension system or additional bracing may be required.

  • Dayn Anderson

    Member
    December 11, 2021 at 9:00 pm

    One would think with “right to repair” could mean it’s possible, but honestly, never get the lowest battery option on any EV unless you never really plan on traveling outside a very limited boundary (i.e. NEV/Golf Cart range) because all batteries degrade over time, and smaller batteries generally do not deal with loads as well as larger ones, so I would just say go with the 400 mile+ range battery, and based on the fact that they have been working with Monroe & Associates to design their vehicles, he promotes either the “sealed battery with no maintenance” design, or the “easily accessible for maintenance” designs. Given that Aptera is focused on efficiency, I would guess they would go with the former, as Tesla has done, to reduce weight and costs of manufacture. I wouldn’t be surprised if the battery pack is structural, it will be interesting to see Sandy tear down one of Aptera’s vehicles in future so we can see first hand. ????

  • Tom R Lansing

    Member
    February 18, 2022 at 11:01 am

    Wonder if a battery upgrade program is possible after the delivery such as 40KWH to 60KWH? Seems like 40KWH batteries are planned at first then. Might be asking twice. If so opps.

  • Peter Jorgensen

    Member
    February 18, 2022 at 11:38 am

    We asked Aptera about that and they said no – we can’t upgrade after purchase.

    A few years down the road some clever people might be able to figure out how to swap the right parts out but generally what you get is what you’re stuck with. Go big or go home.

  • Tom R Lansing

    Member
    February 18, 2022 at 11:47 am

    My understanding they will only produce 40KWH until… Really would prefer 60 but don’t want to wait forever.

    • OZ (It’s OZ, Just OZ)

      Member
      February 18, 2022 at 11:58 am

      From a question posed to Chris Anthony this week. Yes the order will be 400-250-600-1000, each pack has to be individually designed to fit in the vehicle, the 400s first. so the assembly process will start with those, as each pack design is completed they will begin producing that model at the same time as they are producing the earlier sizes. In the earliest webcast that was made, it was indicated that the roll out for all of the sizes would be over a relatively short time, I’m hoping that continues to be the case and will try to get an updated response to that from Aptera.

  • Kayleigh Venne

    Administrator
    February 18, 2022 at 11:55 am

    Hi Tom! You can upgrade your battery pack any time prior to delivery once logged into your https://www.aptera.us account and upon confirmation of the final configuration of your Aptera. However, currently, we are not planning to have the battery upgradable in segments. If you want a bigger pack you would have to replace the whole battery pack. This could be an option in the future! We’re all about continuous innovation, after all! But for now, our goal is to build this vehicle in a very modular fashion to keep the cost low and to hopefully help us scale really quickly.

    • This reply was modified 8 months ago by  bbelcamino.

    Aptera

    • OZ (It’s OZ, Just OZ)

      Member
      February 18, 2022 at 12:02 pm

      Kayleigh, thanks for that, any chance you can look at my entry above and weigh in with an estimate on the timeline for getting all four battery sizes in production once it starts?

    • Ray Holan

      Moderator
      February 20, 2022 at 12:32 pm

      Kayleigh, you are doing the forum a real service by posting. This gives us the benefit of hearing from someone inside the company rather than winnowing through our own speculations to come up with our best guess as to really what’s going on. I’d like to think we are, in the main, realists who realize Aptera is a work and a design in progress. As such, it is going to be fraught with twists and turns along the way. Keep up the good work!

  • Joshua Caldwell

    Member
    February 18, 2022 at 4:04 pm

    Early on, he said yes, upgrades were possible, now he is saying no.

    • John Malcom

      Member
      February 20, 2022 at 2:19 pm

      I don’t think Aptera ever advertised battery upgrades to the configuration initially purchased after the vehicle is delivered. If you have the reference please share with us.

      Aptera has always said you can change any part of your reservation configuration to include battery capacity up to the time you are contacted to purchase a vehicle.

      The batteries are not plug and play. Battery control hardware and software need to be changed, changes to the battery compartment where the batteries resideand the cooling system capacity need to be made. The suspension needs to be retuned for the new battery configuration as well. I am sure there are other changes, perhaps to the UI that would need to be made to accommodate the new configuration.

      • Crissa Kentavr

        Member
        July 11, 2022 at 12:00 pm

        The biggest problem is battery cell balancing. To get the most out of a battery pack, it needs to work as a whole. That means that if segments are of different ages, the segments will then be unbalanced, which will reduce the lifetime of the older segments.

  • Elzo Stubbe

    Member
    February 20, 2022 at 7:46 am

    Some poetry: People not willing to wait…. but with an earlier preorder date… taking the option to downgrade… resulting in a much longer wait?

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