Volkswagen has recently announced that it is pursuing its own production of electric car battery cells with almost one billion euros. At the AGM this week, it was announced that production is expected to start "in late 2022 or early 2023" in Salzgitter with 700 employees and a capacity of more than ten gigawatt hours. It should not stay that way.
In the year 2025, the carmaker would need batteries with a total capacity of 150 gigawatt hours for the production planned in Europe alone – and far from that, not everything has been taken. "I assume that you can double the production based in Germany, but the details have not yet been worked out," said Procurement Board Stefan Sommer.
For the location Salzgitter speak according to Volkswagen several conditions. "We are close to our development, also close to the vehicle plants that we envisage for electromobility," explained Sommer. "Salzgitter is a location where we already employ about 200 researchers and developers with the subject battery cell, and is therefore a natural location for further investment in a cell factory," added CEO Herbert Diess. According to Sommer additional locations in Europe are under discussion.
Volkswagen emphasizes that its own production is still subject to economic conditions. The supervisory board and Lower Saxony's Prime Minister Stephan Weil commented: "This is basically clarified and that is why I have no doubt at this point." Although there should be no national subsidies, the energy-intensive operation of cell production is expected from the EEG surcharge for the expansion of renewable energies be freed.
Volkswagen plans to launch nearly 70 new electric models over the next ten years. The number of projected vehicles on the Group's e-platforms was 22 million. At last year's Annual General Meeting, Volkswagen announced that it had awarded contracts for electric car batteries worth 40 billion euros to Asian suppliers. The establishment of an own production should counteract possible bottlenecks and dependencies.