MILWAUKEE - Hitachi Ltd. and Johnson Controls Inc. said they have agreed to work together in the field of advanced energy storage, including lithium-ion battery development for automotive applications.

"To truly build a successful advanced energy storage industry, it's going to require significant ongoing efforts across the entire spectrum of the business, including everything from research and development through commercialization capabilities," said Alex Molinaroli, president for Johnson Controls Power Solutions. "By combining our complementary strengths, Hitachi and Johnson Controls have a great opportunity to help shape and lead the development of this emerging industry."

In 2000, the Hitachi Group began mass-producing lithium-ion automotive batteries. Since then, it has produced over 1,200,000 cells, mainly for commercial hybrid buses and trucks, as well as for railway cars and other applications.

Johnson Controls Power Solutions is a leader in lead-acid automotive batteries and advanced batteries for hybrid and electric vehicles.