Stellantis, Samsung SDI to build $2.5 bln Indiana JV battery plant


Stellantis NV and Samsung SDI said on Tuesday they will invest more than $2.5 billion to build a new joint venture battery plant in Kokomo, Indiana, as the Chrysler-parent ramps up electric vehicle production plans.

Targeted to start in 2025, the plant aims to have an initial annual production capacity of 23 gigawatt hours (GWh), with an aim to increase to 33 GWh in the next few years.

The joint venture will create 1,400 new jobs and the investment could gradually increase to up to $3.1 billion.

Indiana said the project is eligible for at least $186.5 million in incentives plus additional unspecified ones. Kokomo, Howard County, Duke Energy Indiana and the Northern Indiana Public Service Company have also offered additional incentives.

Stellantis is boosting production of plug-in hybrids but has lagged some competitors in launching battery electric vehicles (BEVs) in the United States.

Stellantis Chief Executive Officer Carlos Tavares said during a videoconference he expects a shortage of EV batteries will hit the auto industry in 2024-2025 as manufacturers try to ramp up electric vehicle sales while still building new battery factories.

But as new battery factories – including five planned by Stellantis in Europe and North America – start to accelerate production, Tavares said he expects a shortage of battery raw materials, which he thinks will threaten automakers plans in 2027-2028.

The new Stellantis battery plant in Kokomo will be located near its three existing combustion engine and transmission factories.

Tavares said when and how the company could repurpose existing factories to build electric vehicle components instead of combustion engine parts will be “based on the regulation of emissions.”

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