6 European battery cell gigafactories to be built by 2030

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15 March 2023
  • Milestone for Volkswagen Group: launch of new battery company PowerCo and start of construction for first cell factory in Salzgitter
  • Gigafactory Salzgitter to start production in 2025, initial capacity of 40GWh per year with potential for further expansion
  • Valencia, St Thomas: PowerCo forges ahead with expanding its global battery business in Spain and North America
  • Six gigafactories planned to produce a total volume of 240GWh by 2030, enough for 3 million electric vehicles a year.

The Volkswagen Group has ramped up its presence in the battery market with the establishment of PowerCo, a separate battery company. Since its launch in July 2022, PowerCo has selected three sites for cell factories – Salzgitter in Germany, Valencia in Spain and St Thomas in Ontario, Canada. Two of these sites are already under construction with the first set to commence production in 2025. This is part of PowerCo’s overall plan to build six gigafactories in Europe by 2030 with additional factories in North America, as the Volkswagen Group looks to become a leading provider in the global battery market.

Now responsible for the Volkswagen Group’s global battery business, PowerCo will coordinate activities along the entire battery value chain, from raw material supply and development to the construction and operation of gigafactories. By 2030, PowerCo intends to operate six cell factories in Europe with a combined annual volume of 240GWh – enough for about 3 million electric vehicles. The first cell factory is currently under construction in the German city of Salzgitter.

Gigafactory Salzgitter

PowerCo has broken the ground for the first official cell factory in Salzgitter. The plant is to be a blueprint for future cell factories throughout Europe, setting new standards in sustainability and innovation. From Salzgitter, PowerCo will manage international factory operations, including the further development of cell technology, the vertical integration of the value chain and the supply of machinery and equipment to the factories. After production commences in 2025, the plant is expected to reach an annual capacity of 40GWh, enough for about 500,000 electric vehicles.

Gigafactory Valencia

PowerCo has officially given the starting signal for construction of its second cell factory in the Spanish region of Valencia. Gigafactory Valencia will begin production of the unified cell in 2026, with an initial production capacity of 40GWh, potentially expanding to 60GWh in the future.

Sitting on around 130 hectares, the site was chosen for its availability of low-cost green electricity, the regional research and innovation hub and the good transport infrastructure. And with a new 250-hectare solar farm in the immediate vicinity, the cell factory will be supplied completely with green electricity from solar and wind power.

Gigafactory St Thomas

St Thomas, Ontario has been confirmed as the location for PowerCo’s first overseas and third Group-owned gigafactory worldwide. As the Volkswagen Group ramps up its activities in North America, Canada has been identified as an ideal site location due to the local supply of raw materials and wide access to clean electricity. Start of production is planned for 2027, with the plant primed to equip the Group brand’s BEVs in the region with cutting-edge battery cells.


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