Mercedes-Benz Acquires YASA In Electrification Efforts
Mercedes-Benz is acquiring British electric motor developer YASA — the latest step in its strategy to go all-electric by 2030.
Mercedes-Benz recently announced its acquisition of YASA, a U.K.-based producer of axial-flux electric motors. The 250-employee company will run as a wholly-owned subsidiary of the German automotive giant, continuing operations from its headquarters in Oxford and production facility in Wales.
YASA CEO Chris Harris. Image courtesy of YASA
The deal comes as Mercedes-Benz recently unveiled a comprehensive strategy to launch three electric-only architectures in 2025 — the MB.EA, AMG.EA and VAN.EA — in preparation to go all-electric by the end of the decade.
It plans to install battery cell capacity topping 200 Gigawatt hours and will create eight gigafactories with its global partners, in addition to its previously-announced series of nine battery production facilities. The company plans to make its batteries suitable for use in more than 90% of its cars and vans.
YASA says its axial-flux electric motors offer the best efficiency and highest power density with the smallest size and weight for the market.
YASA’s axial-flux electric motor. Image courtesy of Business Wire
Founded in 2009, the company has raised over $56 million in funding from multiple investors, including U.K.-based investment management firm Parkwalk Advisors, South Africa-based investor Universal Partners, and venture capital firms Oxford Sciences Innovation and Inovia Capital. In 2019, Ferrari selected YASA’s electric motor for its first hybrid series supercar, the SF90 Stradale. The company also partnered with Rolls-Royce to produce electric motors for the world’s fastest electric airplane, first unveiled in late-2019.
YASA first partnered with Mercedes-Benz in 2019, the year the auto giant introduced its first EQC production EV. Now operating as a subsidiary, YASA will help Mercedes-Benz develop electric drive solutions to power its AMG.EA electric-only platform. In a statement, YASA CEO Chris Harris said the company would also act as an “innovation partner pioneering new electric drive technology for the wider Group and also continuing to supply our existing automotive supercar customers.”
“This acquisition is tremendously exciting because it gives YASA technology the global scale and reach of Mercedes-Benz,” Harris added. “Together, we have the opportunity to make YASA the premier mark of excellence in electric motor technology, accelerating the adoption of electric vehicles and resetting the bar for electric driving experiences.”
Philipp Schiemer, CEO of Mercedes-AMG and head of the Top End Vehicle Group, commented that YASA’s axial-flux technology will give a competitive edge to Mercedes-AMG’s electric performance cars.
“Thanks to electric motors with higher power density and continuous torque delivery we will redefine the future of driving performance,” Schiemer added.