General Motors and Samsung SDI recently announced a joint investment of over $3 billion to establish an electric vehicle battery manufacturing facility in the United States. The announcement comes as South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol visits the United States.
Yoon is not alone in his US visit. The president is also accompanied by over 100 executives from South Korea’s most prolific companies. These include heavyweights such as Samsung Electronics Executive Chairman Jay Y. Lee and Hyundai Motor Group Executive Chair Euisun Chung.
The planned GM-Samsung SDI plant, which is expected to start operations in 2026, is looking to have an annual production capacity of 30 GWh. The facility is expected to manufacture high-nickel prismatic and cylindrical battery cells for electric vehicles, as noted in a Reuters report. So far, however, the exact location of the facility has yet to be announced.
GM Executive Doug Parks emphasized the importance of multiple strong cell partners in scaling their EV business more rapidly. “With multiple strong cell partners, we can scale our EV business faster than we could going it alone,” Parks said.
While GM lags far behind industry leader Tesla in the US’ electric vehicle market, the veteran automaker is putting in a lot of effort to ensure that its EV program is well supplied. For one, the automaker already has a joint venture with battery maker LG Energy Solution in the country. Efforts are currently underway to ramp up GM’s joint venture with LG Energy Solution, which would allow the companies to take advantage of the US’ Inflation Reduction Act.
GM plans to produce 400,000 EVs in North America from 2022 to mid-2024, and the company aims to increase capacity to about 1 million units per year by 2025, roughly the same level as industry leader Tesla’s output in 2021. Estimates suggest that GM would likely require at least two additional electric vehicle factories to meet future EV demand.
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