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The current used to charge any battery does impact battery life. The lower the current, the longer the lifespan of the battery. A higher current, used to do rapid charging, will decrease the lifespan of the battery no matter the chemistry (li-ion, ni-cd, ni-mh, li-po, etc.) Li-ion and li-po batteries should be charged at max 1C (1 x capacity) and will take an hour to charge if the battery is fully discharged. An example is a 2600mah battery charged at 2.6 amps will take one hour to charge. A current of less than 2.6 amps is most desirable to increase the lifespan of a cell. Also, the algorithm used for Li-ion and Li-Po batteries is CC/CV (constant current, then constant voltage). The charge current will remain constant until a specific voltage is met by the battery, then that voltage remains constant while the current decreases.

From what I understand, A123 cells can be charged up to 4C. A 1750mah battery can be charged at 7 amps and will take 15 minutes. They also have a 30C discharge rate which means a 1000mah battery can be safely discharged at 30 amps. The battery needed for the Volt would be huge and consist of batteries assembled in series and parallel to meet the voltage/discharge demands. The batteries will need a complex charging and monitoring while in use to ensure no single cell be over discharged/charged, i.e. parallel balancing.
 
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