South Korea’s LG Energy Solutions (LGES) has dethroned China’s Contemporary Amperex Technology (CATL) as the world’s top battery vendor. LG’s accomplishment was made possible by several factors, including the strong demand and increasing momentum of the Made-in-China Tesla Model Y.
According to market analytics firm SNE Research, LG Energy Solution’s installed base rose 270% to 5.7 GWh year-over-year in May. Its growth was fueled by strong sales of the MIC Model Y. Sales of other EVs like the Volkswagen ID.4 and the Skoda ENYAQ also helped boost the South Korean battery maker’s May 2021 numbers.
CATL’s installed capacity in May rose 259.4% YoY to 4.8 GWh, corresponding to a 24.5% share of the overall market. Worldwide, the total installed battery capacity stood at 19.7 GWh, over three times higher than the previous year.
LG Energy Solutions’ performance in May was impressive, as CATL held the title of world’s top battery vendor for the first four months of the year. During this period, CATL posted sales of 21.4 GWh worth of batteries, a 285.09% year-over-year increase. LG Energy Solutions was in second place, selling 14.2 GWh worth of batteries in the first four months of 2021.
The increasing adoption of electric vehicles has helped increase the demand for high-performance batteries, effectively making the industry more competitive than ever before. For the January-May 2021 period alone, global battery capacity stood at 81.6 GW, almost 2.7 times higher than the first five months of 2020.
LG Energy Solutions’ numbers would likely be even more impressive in the coming months, especially as Tesla China ramps the production of the Model Y Standard Range. Demand for the competitively-priced, entry-level crossover seems very high among China’s car buyers, and the vehicle would likely be exported to Europe as well due to the delays in Giga Berlin. With these factors in mind, LG Energy Solutions’ momentum may just be beginning.