The Emerging Market for Replacement Hybrid Car Batteries
By EV World Video
Two-part EV World interview with Dorman Products' Dimitri Manoukis on the 98-year-old company's entrance into the hybrid car battery replacement marketplace.
Earlier this year, Toyota announced that it had produced some 4 million hybrid electric vehicles since the launch of the original Prius in December 2007, and virtually all of them use some form of nickel-metal hydride battery pack. Honda and Ford both followed suit with their own versions in the first generation Insight and Escape Hybrids, respectively.
So, suffice it to say there are a lot of hybrid cars out there now. Imagine, the second generation Prius is now a decade old, and while even Toyota has been pleasantly surprised by the longevity of its Panasonic-based battery packs, a lot of those early hybrids are going to be needing replacement batteries. That's where 98-year-old Dorman Products comes into the picture (see their linked banner in the right-hand column). The automotive aftermarket distributor with a catalog that is literally millions of items in length is getting into the business of offering remanufacturing battery packs for sale through its distribution channels.
We chatted with the hybrid battery product manager, Dimitri Manoukis, about the company and its new product line, which acquires salvaged battery packs from a growing list of hybrids including the Prius and Honda Civic for remanufacture. While this is a new business for them, Manoukis explains that the company is going to offer a three-year warranty, triple the length typically offered by franchise dealers. The company also provides full video instruction at DormanHybrid.com.
What the company does is acquire batteries from various used and salvage markets. It then puts each cell in the pack through a refurbishment process, culling those that aren't able meet its specs. The result is a battery pack that Manoukis is confident will provide years of additional service to owners of older hybrid electric cars.
Our interview is in two-parts and lasts just under 30-minutes.
Video Part 1
Video Part 2
Originally published: 24 Nov 2013
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