SVOLT Energy Technology (the former Battery Business Unit of Great Wall Motor Co.) intends to build its first European lithium-ion cell gigafactory in Saarlouis, Germany.
According to Bloomberg, the plan envisions investment of €2 billion ($2.4 billion) in manufacturing capacity of 24 GWh annually, which would be enough for 300,000-500,000 electric cars (assuming an average battery pack of respectively 80 kWh or 48 kWh).
If everything will go as planned, the start of production is expected within three years, at the end of 2023.
The article does not reveal who might be the customer for SVOLT cells. However, the location of Saarlouis, along Germany’s border with France, is where Ford has its plant (currently making the Focus model).
Does this mean that Ford will use SVOLT cells in its new Focus/other EV (possibly MEB-based)?
We assume that to be successful, SVOLT has to secure a few deals and the location between Germany and France is actually quite flexible.
Only time will tell how this investment will progress, but basically every month now, the European area is becoming more and more crowded. It’s unbelievable how things changed in a decade when Europe was basically a lithium-ion battery desert.