Automotive design maven Henrik Fisker's new venture might be less about the automobile than the technology that will power it.
Fisker's eponymous company, which plans to introduce a sporty upper-end luxury car and other vehicles, is developing a new power technology known as a three-dimensional solid-state battery. The battery promises to be safer, lighter and run longer than the lithium ion battery technology that commonly powers the current generation of electric vehicles.
Fisker Inc. claims its batteries will have three-dimensional electrodes with 2.5 times the energy density of today's lithium ion batteries — delivering a brow-raising 500-mile driving range and charging times as low as one minute.
"Our chief scientist is an expert on solid-state batteries," Fisker told Automotive News. "He has done, shall we say, the 2.0 of solid-state batteries."
Thin-film batteries, which have a limited surface area, have issues: The batteries can't generate enough power for a car, they can't handle extremely cold temperatures and they can be expensive.
Fisker's technology uses three-dimensional solid-state electrodes that have 25 times more surface area than flat thin-film solid-state electrodes and high electronic and ionic conductivities, according to Green Car Congress. That enables fast charging and cold-temperature operation.
"We see a fairly clear path to solving those issues with our technology," Fisker said.
But that path is far from guaranteed.