Recently Bill Kozyra, the CEO of Continental Automotive Systems - North America, had a chat with BusinessWeek where he revealed some interesting information about the Chevy Volt. Continental has gotten into the battery business recently and will be supplying lithium ion batteries to Mercedes-Benz for their mild hybrid system beginning in 2009. The company is also partnered with A123 Systems as the pack integrator for A123 cells for the Chevy Volt.

The first prototype Conti/A123 pack for the Volt program that was delivered to GM at the end of January has been undergoing testing since then. Kozyra told BusinessWeek that Continental would have Volt lithium ion batteries in production at the end of 2009. Asked if the batteries were going into production vehicles, Kozyra replied " Yeah. Specifically in the Chevrolet Volt in late 2009." Considering that GM has stated a target of late 2010 for Volt production, this seems highly optimistic.

I checked with GM spokesman Rob Peterson, and according to him the target for the Volt is still late 2010. We're still waiting for a follow up comment from Continental on this one.

[Source: BusinessWeek]