General Motors and Samsung partner on $3bn battery plant in the US
Image credit: reuters
General Motors (GM) and Samsung are planning to build a new $3bn (£2.4bn) battery cell manufacturing plant in the US that should begin operations in 2026.
The plant will have more than 30GWh of capacity and will bring GM’s total US battery cell capacity to about 160GWh when it is at full production.
In 2021, the car-making giant, which own brands such as Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet and GMC, unveiled a plan to become carbon neutral by 2040 in efforts that lean heavily on ramping up production of zero-emissions vehicles and building out the necessary charging infrastructure.
Last year it said it expects to build 400,000 electric vehicles (EVs) in North America from 2022 through mid-2024 and increase capacity to one million units annually in North America in 2025.
The US also recently introduced new tax breaks for EVs that are more generous for those made domestically with minerals from the US or trade allies.
“GM’s supply chain strategy for EVs is focused on scalability, resiliency, sustainability and cost-competitiveness. Our new relationship with Samsung SDI will help us achieve all these objectives,” said GM chair and CEO Mary Barra. “The cells we will build together will help us scale our EV capacity in North America well beyond one million units annually.”
Samsung SDI president and CEO Yoon-ho Choi said: “We will do our best to provide the products featuring the highest levels of safety and quality produced with our unrivalled technologies to help GM strengthen its leadership in the EV market.”
The companies plan to jointly operate the facility, and it is projected to have production lines to build nickel-rich prismatic and cylindrical cells.
According to GM executive vice-president Doug Parks, the joint venture will leverage the capital and technology of both companies to create new competitive advantages for GM.
“We will continue to scale production and optimise the chemistry of our pouch cells for performance, range and cost using new approaches pioneered at GM’s Wallace Battery Center and by our technology partners,” he said.
“The introduction of new cell form factors will allow us to expand into even more segments more quickly and integrate cells directly into battery packs to reduce weight, complexity and costs. With multiple strong cell partners, we can scale our EV business faster than we could going it alone.”
GM and Samsung have not announced the location of the plant or employment projections so far, although they said the number of new jobs in construction and operations are expected to number in the thousands.
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