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BMW Group: Taking EV battery recycling to 96%

The BMW Group partners with Duesenfield, a German recycling specialist to develop a method to achieve a recycling rate of up to 96 per cent from EV batteries


BMW Group Taking EV battery recycling to 96% featYears ago, BMW set a goal of making its cars 95% recyclable and is pulling out all the stops to achieve this. But with the low percentage of secondary material in new vehicles, this could prove challenging.

The BMW Group looked at ways to use these resources more efficiently. Oliver Zipse, BMW CEO, said: “Our goal is clear: We want to further close the material cycles to protect nature’s finite resources and use them even more efficiently.” BMW plans to use more high-quality secondary material in new vehicles which is sourced from recycling more from now on, up to 2030. 

According to the BMW Group, ‘Recycled material has the potential to drop the CO2 emissions substantially compared to primary materials. For example, recycling aluminium cuts the CO2 emissions by three to four times while doing the same for cobalt, nickel, and lithium does the same job by two to three times over. Minimising the amount of new extraction needed is also essential to conserve resources and reduce the potential for conflict – especially for critical raw materials.’

When it comes to electrification of vehicles, the EU only requires a recycling rate of 50 per cent for high-voltage batteries. Still, BMW joined forces with recycling specialist Duesenfeld to develop a method that can achieve a recycling rate of up to 96 per cent – including graphite and electrolytes.

The BMW Group already takes back all used BMW high-voltage batteries globally and are giving them a second life at battery storage farms like the one at BMW Group plant in Leipzig.