GM, Samsung plan new EV battery cell factory in US

DETROIT, April 25 (BNA): General Motors and South Korea’s Samsung intend to invest more than $3 billion in building a new electric vehicle battery cell plant in the United States, the two companies said Tuesday.

GM and Samsung SDI said in a statement that they had not announced the intended location for the new plant, which is expected to begin operations in 2026.

According to the Associated Press (AP), GM and Samsung SDI plan to jointly operate the plant, which is expected to produce nickel-rich prismatic and cylindrical cells. The companies said it is expected to create thousands of jobs.

The venture is General Motors’ fourth joint venture battery cell plant. It has announced three other businesses with LG Energy Solution in South Korea. A 900-worker plant near Warren, Ohio, has begun building cells, while work is underway on plants in Spring Hill, Tennessee, and Lansing, Michigan.

The announcement coincides with a visit by South Korean President Yoon Sok-yul to the United States. The two countries marked the 70th anniversary of their alliance with a summit that also included announcements on new nuclear deterrence efforts, cyber security, and other areas of cooperation.

Samsung was chosen as the fourth plant partner after some Chevrolet Bolt batteries made by LG caught fire, forcing General Motors to recall about 142,000 vehicles due to a battery manufacturing problem. The recall cost General Motors about $1.9 billion, and the automaker said it was paid for by LG.

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“We will do our best to provide the highest level of safety and quality products produced using our unrivaled technologies to help GM consolidate its leadership in the electric vehicle market,” said Yoon-ho Choi, President and CEO of Samsung SDI, in a statement.

The two companies said the new plant will have a capacity of more than 30 gigawatt-hours and will increase GM’s total US battery cell capacity to about 160 gigawatt-hours when in full production.

GM has pledged to sell only electric vehicles by 2035. It said that because of its heavy investment in battery plants and the electric supply chain in North America, six of its current or upcoming electric vehicles would be eligible for the $7,500 US federal electric vehicle award. credit tax. They are the Chevrolet Bolt and Bolt SUV, Chevrolet Silverado electric pickup, Cadillac Lyric SUV, and the upcoming Chevy Blazer and Equinox electric SUV.

Under the US Inflation Act, electric vehicles must be assembled in North America, and a certain percentage of their battery parts and metal must come from North America or a US Free Trade Partner to qualify for the full tax credit.

Workers at the Ohio battery plant have voted to join the United Auto Workers union, which is lobbying to organize the other factories and get the highest wages for workers. Union officials said they should organize battery plants so that workers who make engines and transmissions have somewhere to go when jobs making internal combustion vehicles are phased out.

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Gas-powered vehicles have 30% to 40% fewer moving parts and require 30% fewer labor hours to build them.


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