A new agreement in the production of automotive lithium-ion battery packs is a further development of Suzuki Motor Corporation’s environmentally friendly policy.

Already well known for its efficient and low polluting vehicles, Suzuki has an environment message of “smaller, fewer, lighter, shorter and cleaner” in the production of small and sub-compact vehicles and the development of environmentally benign products.

Suzuki has just reached a basic agreement with Toshiba Corporation and Denso Corporation on establishing a joint venture company for production of lithium-ion battery packs in India.

The agreement is part of the emphasis by the Japanese motor manufacturer on preserving the environment and seeking lower levels of CO2 emissions.

In the Indian market where compact cars are the mainstream models, sustainable technology suitable for such affordable cars is becoming increasingly important. The battery pack manufacturing joint venture by the three companies will enable a stable supply of lithium-ion batteries in India.

The joint venture company is being established this year with an initial capital expenditure equivalent to $2.6 billion New Zealand dollars. Suzuki is to own 50 percent of the venture with Toshiba taking a 40 percent share and Denso 10 percent.

In a further development Suzuki has won the contribution prize in the 49th Ichimura industry award hosted by the New Technology Development Foundation for development of a resin material with excellent appearance as pre-coloured interior parts for cars.

This new bio-polycarbonate resin material has a high-gloss appearance and is highly durable when faced with sunlight, heat and impact. Suzuki won the award because the material combines qualities for pre-colouring with good structural design, resulting in a glossy surface that is comparable to that of painted parts.

Suzuki says the resin also contributes towards a suppression in environmental loads including a reduction in volatile organic compounds compared to painted parts. The technology is to be widely used for interior parts and trim garnish in upcoming Suzuki models.

Working towards a better environment has been a long time goal for Suzuki. In March 2002 the company established its global environment charter within which it promotes a wide range of environmental policies throughout the Suzuki network.

Suzuki has also been working to improve the durability and range of its revolutionary new fuel-cell electric vehicles, which are currently under development.