KOSAI, Japan – Panasonic EV Energy Co., the world's leading maker of rechargeable nickel-metal hydride (NiMH) batteries for hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs), is about halfway to reaching its cost target of $300 per 100 kilowatt-hours, down from $500 to $600 in early 2000. A senior research official expects the company to reach $300 levels in 2004 or 2005 through increased output and associated economies of scale and improved battery performance. "Our main priority is to raise power ...

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