LG Chem and Hyundai Motor are discussing a reaction to plan to the recent fires on the Kona EV electric vehicle model, TheElec has learned.
They are considering a voluntary recall as the most likely decision for the troubled models, people familiar with the matter said.
The pair has discussed the expected cost of recalling as they have decided to share the cost equally. The people said.
LG Chem is expect a one time cost similar to that of those caused by fires in its energy storage systems last year. The cost will be marked as operating loss on its books.
The recall will likely involve a software update to limit battery charging and speed.
This options is the most plausible as it will take time to find the exact causes of the fire.
A voluntary recall will allow the companies to recover their images more quickly, a person familiar with the matter said. More fires without a recall will make it more difficult for LG Chem and Hyundai to manage the situation, the person said.
Kona EV fires in South Korea usually happened during charging or in parking lots. Battery are heated mostly during charging.
It could be that the battery management system is malfunctioning, the person said.
Kona EV was launched in 2018. In South Korea there has been 11 fires related to the model and two cases abroad.
A total of 96,053 units of the car has been sold as of last year. LG Chem supplies the battery cell for the model. It used NCM622 (nickel, cobalt and manganese in 6 to 2 to 2 ratio) cathode. Battery pack was made by HL Green Power, a joint venture between LG Chem and Hyundai Mobis. Hyundai Mobis combines the battery pack with the battery management system before supplying them to Hyundai Motor.