The Chinese battery cell manufacturer and Volkswagen partner Gotion High-Tech has begun construction of a new production facility in the eastern Chinese city of Hefei, which will be built in two phases and will have an annual capacity of 50 GWh when completed.
The announcement is not surprising, as Gotion wants to increase its annual capacity from 28 GWh (as of the end of 2020) to 300 GWh by 2025. As a result, the Chinese manufacturer needs to get several plants up and running in a short time. The production facility now announced will be built in the Xinzhan High-Tech Industrial Development Zone in the city of Hefei. According to media reports, Gotion High-Tech has announced this through official channels.
The first phase of the plant will be built on a 36-hectare site and is scheduled to go into operation at the end of March 2023. The battery cells produced there will go to several car manufacturers, according to Gotion. Part of the production is likely to be reserved for Volkswagen: In July, it became known that Gotion also wants to produce unified cells in China for the Wolfsburg-based company. In this context, Hefei was also mentioned as the location and the annual production capacity was put at 20 GWh or, in a first phase, at 10 GWh. It is highly likely that the 20 GWh for Volkswagen are integrated into the plans for the 50 GWh factory.
It fits in with this that in September, Volkswagen also started building a production plant for battery systems in Hefei. The factory is to initially supply between 150,000 and 180,000 high-voltage battery systems for Volkswagen Anhui’s all-electric MEB vehicles from the second half of 2023.
In Germany, Volkswagen recently brought Gotion High-Tech on board as a partner for the planned battery factory in Salzgitter. Unit cells for the volume segment are to be built there from 2025. Production in Hefei could therefore start even before Salzgitter. Gotion is also preparing a cell production facility in Germany. The manufacturer wants to convert an existing Bosch production facility there. As part of the transaction, Gotion High-Tech recently acquired all shares in Robert Bosch Aftermarket Solutions GmbH.
Further details are hardly known. According to media reports, an assembly plant for lithium-ion batteries is to be built in Göttingen, or Gotion’s “first battery production centre in Europe”. There are no official details on the purchase price, the timetable or the planned future production volume.
Among battery manufacturers in China, Gotion High-Tech ranked fourth after CATL (54.48 GWh), BYD (17.88 GWh) and CALB (6.42) in the January-October period with 5.52 GWh of installed battery capacity. This is according to data from the China Automotive Power Battery Industry Innovation Alliance (CAPBIIA).
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