LG joining Honda in $4.4B EV Battery Manufacturing project in the U.S.

Aug. 31, 2022
The joint venture would produce lithium-ion batteries in the U.S. to power Honda and Acura EVs. The partners will invest about $4.4 billion and build a new battery manufacturing facility which can produce close to 40-GWh of capacity annually

South Korea utility-scale and e-mobility battery supplier LG Energy Solution is the latest energy storage firm to reveal plans for future manufacturing operations in the United States.

LG and Honda Motor Co. this week announced plans to create a joint venture to produce lithium-ion batteries in the U.S. to power Honda and Acura electric vehicle models. The partners will invest about $4.4 billion and build a new battery manufacturing facility which can produce close to 40-GWh of capacity annually.

In recent weeks, battery companies such as Fluence Energy, Factorial and automaker Ford have promised to expand their supply chains and in many cases bring the production deeper into the U.S.

"Our joint venture with Honda, which has significant brand reputation, is yet another milestone in our mid- to long-term strategy of promoting electrification in the fast-growing North American market," said Youngsoo Kwon, CEO of LG Energy Solution. “Since our ultimate goal is to earn our valued customers’ trust and respect, we aspire to position ourselves as a leading battery innovator, working with Honda in achieving its core initiatives for electrification, as well as providing sustainable energy solutions to discerning end consumers.”

LG Energy Solution is a spinoff of global firm LG Chem. The battery research and development firm has worked on supply deals with EV makers such as General Motors, Stellantis, Ford and Hyundai.

LG also has supplied utility-scale battery storage systems for utilities, grid support and microgrid projects worldwide. Its battery technologies is primarily focused around lithium-ion chemistry, which currently makes up 80 to 90 percent of new and longtime-installed battery projects.

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The closing of the LG-Honda joint venture still awaits some regulatory approvals. They hope to begin construction next year and produce advance li-ion batteries by 2025.

Fluence Energy, the battery storage joint venture of Siemens and AES which went public in the last year, recently confirmed it had made agreement with a contract manufacturer to produce the Cube module in Utah. Fluence expects to expand U.S. operations gradually.

Factorial Energy, which is backed by EV makers such as Stellantis and Mercedes Benz, will establish an EV battery manufacturing plant in Massachusetts. The $45 million project could be operational sometime next year, according to Factorial.

Ford’s Model e division, which also has supply deals with LG, is expanding its battery supply chain beyond nickel technologies and beyond previous mining agreements. One of those supply deals covering North America is with Vale Canada.

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(Rod Walton, senior editor for EnergyTech, is a 14-year veteran of covering the energy industry both as a newspaper and trade journalist. He can be reached at [email protected]).

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