Volvo Scales Up Localized Battery Production with new Gigafactory

Volvo has committed to building a battery gigafactory in Gothenburg as part of its SEK 30Bn ($3.1Bn) investment to secure locally sourced batteries for future BEVs.

It has teamed up with energy provider Northvolt to construct the plant planned to commence operations in 2025, creating up to 3,000 jobs and complement the planned research and development center that both companies announced in December. Construction of the plant will start in 2023 and it will produce battery cells, specifically developed for use in next-generation pure electric Volvo and Polestar cars. The plant will have a potential annual cell production capacity of up to 50 gigawatt hours (GWh), which would supply batteries for approximately half a million cars per year.

The Swedish location of the plant, which will be built in Torslanda, Gothenburg, offers a direct route into Volvo’s largest car plant, access to infrastructure, a strong pipeline of renewable energy supply and relevant job competences, as well as its proximity to both the automaker’s and Northvolt’s R&D units.

Volvo acknowledges that battery production for its BEVs represents a large part of each car’s total lifecycle carbon emissions. By working with Northvolt, with its expertise in sustainable battery production, and producing batteries near its manufacturing facilities in Europe, the carmaker hopes to significantly reduce the environmental footprint attributable to battery sourcing and production for future cars.

Håkan Samuelsson, Volvo Cars chief executive, said: “Our battery cell partnership with Northvolt is key to our strategic ambitions in electrification. We are committed to becoming a leader in the premium electric car segment and selling only pure electric vehicles by 2030.”

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

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