Volkswagen invests €500 million in battery manufacturing company
Volkswagen has recently invested about €500 million ($620 million) in its Swedish battery partner Northvolt AB with an aim to expand capacity in the fields of research and development, production, and recycling. The automaker which is racing towards electrification had previously invested €900 million in Northvolt in June 2019 and also acquired about 20% of shares in the company with a seat on the board of directors.
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Volkswagen Group Components CEO Thomas Schmall said that batteries are one of the key components when it comes to attaining success in the world of electrification of vehicles. “Batteries are one of the key success factors in our unprecedented electric offensive. In the major area of green battery cells, we are assuming a pioneering role in Germany and Europe together,” he said. Schmall also said that this investment will help to strengthen the strategic partnership of the two companies.
The production of Volkswagen premium cells will be concentrated at Skellefteå with Northvolt. The production of these cells is due to start in 2023. Volkswagen aims to steadily build up its annual capacity to 40 GWh. The second gigafactory of the automaker which is located in Salzgitter will produce the standard cells for the volume segment from 2025. It is also expected to reach an annual production volume of up to 40 GWh. The company said that both the gigafactories will operate on electric power from renewable energy sources.
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Volkswagen has set a target to commission six battery cell factories in Europe by 2030 in collaboration with its partners to secure the company’s plans of electric vehicle production. The automaker is already looking for partners for the next cell factories and also the possible location for those manufacturing plants.