General Motors (NYSE:GM) and LG Chemical have unveiled a joint venture that will see the two companies collaborate to make battery cells for electric cars. The joint venture will create over 1,100 jobs in northeast Ohio.
GM to construct battery cell factory in Ohio
The companies have indicated that they will invest around $2.3 billion in the joint venture with the project in Lordstown, Ohio. This is the place where General Motors shuttered its assembly plant that had manufactured the Chevrolet Cruze. Recently GM sold the idled Cruze assembly plant to Lordstown Motors Corp. It plans to manufacture electric pickup trucks at the plant.
The new plant in the area will produce battery cells for general Motor’s upcoming electric vehicles. These range from the new electric truck to the new Cadillac sedan; expected to debut the market by 2021. According to GM, the joint venture may also supply other companies with the battery cells.
Joint venture to help GM in its plans for an all-electric future
GM CEO Mary Barra indicated that the joint venture would offer the car manufacturer with the knowhow and the battery cell technology. She added that this was a significant step towards having an all-electric future. This includes having at least 20 new electric vehicles by 2023, globally. The company has indicated that it will commence construction on the facility in the summer of 2020.
With the new facility, GM will be able to scale productions and thus enhance electric vehicle affordability and profitability. The company is optimistic that its next-generation electric cars will be profitable after years of losing money on the earlier and current electric cars.
The company indicates that the plant will drive the cost per kilowatts-hours. This is a key metric in making EV affordable to industry-leading standards. GM indicates that the factory will have an annual production capacity of over 30 gigawatts-hours with enhanced flexibility for expansion.
Last year Tesla Motors indicted that its Gigafactory 1 battery plant in Nevada had attained an annualized rate of 30GWh. This is the highest volume battery plant globally.