Hyundai and LGES inaugurate Indonesia’s first cell factory

The Hyundai Motor Group and LG Energy Solution (LGES) have inaugurated Indonesia's first production plant for battery cells for electric vehicles. The two partners will be able to produce battery cells with an annual capacity of ten gigawatt-hours.

Image: Hyundai

The construction of the battery factory was announced back in 2021, as the cell factory is part of a billion-euro investment announced at the time by the two South Korean companies in Indonesia to establish a supply chain for electric cars in the Southeast Asian country. The production of ten GWh should be able to supply around 150,000 electric cars with batteries. Incidentally, the opening date of 2021 was set for the first half of 2024 – which Hyundai and LGES more or less met with the ceremony at the beginning of July.

Indonesia has enormous nickel and copper deposits. The government in Jakarta set itself the goal of not only developing these raw material deposits but also of carrying out the majority of further processing in Indonesia. If the mined materials are not exported directly, this will create additional added value in the country.

The new battery cell factory has been built on the site of an existing Hyundai plant. The South Korean company already produce around 50,000 units of the Kona Electric per year there. As Reuters writes, battery cells of Indonesian origin will also be used for the compact electric SUV in future. This is surprising, as in 2021 there was still talk of NCMA battery cells being manufactured in Indonesia for models on the Hyundai and Kia E-GMP platform. The second generation of the Kona is also based on a different platform.

With the above-mentioned extrapolation, Hyundai could still export battery cells for 100,000 electric cars to other plants. An investment of a further two billion dollars is already being planned to expand the plant’s capacity by 20 GWh – to 30 GWh.

“Mineral resources of this nation, such as iron and nickel are important components in batteries that will mobilise millions of EVs globally,” said Euisun Chung, CEO of the Hyundai Motor Group.


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