Volkswagen Builds First Wholly Owned Battery Plant in China

In line with Volkswagen’s drive to produce battery packs for its BEVs close to production plants, the automaker has started construction of a new battery facility for its Chinese market.

The VW Anhui Components Company in Hefei, Anhui province, is the first battery system plant to be wholly owned by the group in China. Its initial annual capacity will be 150,000 to 180,000 high-voltage battery systems for Volkswagen Anhui’s all- electric vehicles based on the group’s Modular Electric Drive Toolkit (MEB platform).

With an area of over 45,000 square meters (49,212.598 square yards), the plant will be located next to the production facilities of Volkswagen Anhui, the automaker’s first majority-owned joint venture for all-electric vehicles. Volkswagen is investing more than $164M until 2025 in the new plant and its facilities, with the start of production targeted for the second half of 2023.

The battery system for MEB vehicles consists of several cell modules, a cell management controller, a battery management system, and a connector strip, which are interconnected via high-voltage connectors and protected in an aluminum battery housing. In terms of the manufacturing process, there will be two production steps each with two production lines – one for frame production and one for system assembly.

Dr Stephan Wöllenstein, CEO Volkswagen Group China, said: “Volkswagen Group’s platform strategy is a competitive advantage which we are transferring into the e-mobility era. With a significant increase of battery-electric vehicles (BEVs) in the future, we need to focus on keeping key components like battery systems in our own value chain, allowing us to leverage Group-wide synergies and innovations. Volkswagen Anhui and VW Anhui Components Company, alongside our two strong Joint Ventures, are crucial to our electrification strategy and to achieving our goal of the Volkswagen Group China fleet reaching over 40% NEVs by 2030.”

— Paul Myles is a seasoned automotive journalist based in Europe. Follow him on Twitter @Paulmyles_

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