Four months after officially raising the first steel beam at its new battery factory, partner Stellantis and Samsung SDI have announced plans to build a sprawling second facility. Like the first, it will be located in the United States. Exactly where is still a mystery, but while the location is known, production won’t begin until 2027.
The companies have formally signed a memorandum of understanding on the plant, pledging to build it as part of the StarPlus Energy joint venture. To refresh your memory, that’s the $2.5 billion initiative announced by partners in May 2022 to manufacture lithium-ion batteries at a new plant in Kokomo, Indiana. The second plant will target an annual production capacity of 34 gigawatt-hours (GWh), slightly higher than the Kokomo facility which was originally planned for 23 GWh but was later upgraded to 33 GWh.
It should be noted that the memorandum of understanding leaves ample room for adjustments. As such, there are very few details available and the bits we know are not necessarily set. It’s also unclear how much this new factory will cost, but as a reminder, the current project comes in at $2.5 billion price tag.
Stellantis is one of many brands currently investing heavily in the production of EV batteries for North America. This is, of course, a key component in the conglomerate’s Dare Forward 2030 electrification plan. If all goes well, half of the new Stellantis family of vehicles sold in North America will be electric, and that’s about it fully electric versus plug-in hybrid. In Europe, that total will be 100 percent and to get there, Stellantis says it will need a battery capacity of 400 GWh.
“This new facility will contribute to achieving our aggressive target of offering at least 25 new battery electric vehicles for the North American market by the end of the decade,” said Stellantis CEO Carlos Tavares. “We are continuing to add more capacity in the United States together with our great partner Samsung SDI and are laying the next step towards achieving our carbon neutrality commitment by 2038.”
In the near future, Stellantis and Samsung SDI plan to have the Kokomo plant operational in early 2025. Further north, Stellantis is working with LG on a larger 45 GWh plant that could come online in the first quarter of 2024.