LG Chem Breaks Ground on New Lithium-ion Battery Plant in Korea, Eventually Plans to Build One in US
LG Chem is the Korean company that GM chose to supply the lithium-ion battery cells for the Chevrolet Volt. LG has already begun the process of creating the assembly line that will manufacture the proprietary large format or prismatic cells for the Volt. Those cells will be shipped to the USA and placed into packs by GM at its own assembly plant in northeast Michigan. The location for that plant has already been chosen but not yet announced. Current low volume cells for the Volt prototypes are being made on an existing line in Korea.
Each Volt uses between 200 and 300 cells which make up the 300V, 16 kwh battery pack.
News from Korea has disclosed that the GM Volt contract begins on November 1, 2010 and runs until 2015. Though initial cells will be shipped from Korea, LG confirms plans to build a lithium-ion battery factory in the United States for the Volt.
On Wednesday, however, the company had a groundbreaking ceremony for a new lithium-ion battery plant in Korea. LG is investing $794 million to build the plant and is very bullish on the future of electric cars. They expect to receive nearly $2 billion in car battery revenue by 2015, or 20% of the global market, projecting there will be an astounding 4.6 million electric cars on the road by then. They predict there will be 3.3 million cars by 2013.
“We are running out of fossil fuels, and global warming makes the development of eco-friendly energy sources a key issue for survival,” said LG Chem CEO Kim Bahn-suk. “The high performance, high efficient electric car batteries produced here will be a key ingredient for the futuristic and environmentally-friendly car technologies.”
Representatives from the Korean government were at the cermony too along with GM’s director of EVs and Hybrids, Bob Kruse.
“The government aims to grow Korean green car industry to be one of the world’s ‘big four’ by the mid 2010s, and I believe LG Chem will be a valuable partner for us,” Korean Minister of Knowledge Economy Lee said. “The future of the electronic car battery will also decide the future of not only the global auto industry but also the energy industry in a larger sense.”
LG says details on construction of the US plant have not yet been decided.
“Details are not available at this time because things are still being worked out,” LG spokesperson Dick Pacini told GM-Volt.com. “But our plan always has been to grow our footprint in the US, and in particular, Michigan.”
This entry was posted on Wednesday, June 10th, 2009 at 9:41 am and is filed under Battery, Production. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.