The South Korean manufacturer SK Innovation announces the construction of another factory for battery cells in Hungary. The ground-breaking ceremony will take place in March this year in Komárom, where SK Innovation started building its first Hungarian battery factory a year ago.
The new factory is to be completed in 2021 and will begin large-scale deliveries of cells to European car manufacturers from 2022 onwards. SK Innovation has not yet provided any information on the planned capacity of the new plant, but on the investments, which will amount to 859 million dollars (753 million euros).
With the second Hungarian battery factory, SK Innovation intends to further strengthen its presence on the European market. According to an accompanying press release, the new plant will be built on a 117,130 square meter site that is part of the 430,000 square meter site in Komárom. The plant, which is already under construction there, will have an annual capacity of 7.5 GWh, which will be reached after the final expansion stage in 2022. The South Koreans are planning to produce third generation cells there. According to last year’s figures, the investment in the first plant amounts to around 784 million dollars (around 688 million euros).
We recall that only a few months ago the Koreans announced the construction of a battery cell factory in the USA. While the initial talk was of an investment of around one billion dollars to produce battery cells with a total capacity of 9.8 GWh annually from 2022 onwards, rumours soon arose that SK Innovation was considering investing up to 5 billion dollars there – including the corresponding expansion of production capacities. Either way, construction of the US factory in Commerce – about an hour northeast of Atlanta – is scheduled to begin this year.
In summary, the company’s global production capacity is expected to increase to 60 GWh by 2022, distributed as follows: Seosan, Korea (4.7 GWh per year), Komárom, Hungary (7.5 GWh + X), Changzhou, China (7.5 GWh per year) and Commerce, USA (at least 9.8 GWh per year). It was recently reported that SK Innovation, due to the high demand, wanted to spend around 10 billion dollars on investments in battery cells by 2025 in order to increase its production capacity to around 100 GWh per year by then. These figures are not officially confirmed.