On January 4, 2021, an article was published on SeekingAlpha flagging several risks associated with QuantumScape Corporation’s (NYSE: QS) solid-state batteries that make them “completely unacceptable for real world field electric vehicles.” Specifically, the article provided that the batteries’ power mean they “will only last for 260 cycles or about 75,000 miles of aggressive driving.” Because solid-state batteries are temperature-sensitive, “the power and cycle tests at 30 and 45 degrees above would have been significantly worse if run even a few degree slower.” The market was stunned by this news, and the stock price fell $34.49 per share, to close at just $49.96. This represents a one-day drop of approximately 41%, representing billions of dollars in lost market capitalization.
A lawsuit has been filed against QuantumScape and certain of its executives in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. The lawsuit is captioned Marliat v.QuantumScape Corp., et al., No. 3:21-cv-00058 (N.D. Cal.). The suit alleges that after QuantumScape went public via a business combination in late 2020,QuantumScape misled investors as to the purported success of its solid-state battery power, battery life, and energy density. The lawsuit further alleges that QuantumScape misled investors as to its ability to scale its technology to the multi-layer cell necessary to power electric vehicles.