The beginning of construction has begun at what will be Samsung SDI’s new electric vehicle battery production plant in Goed, Hungary, according to recent reports.
The new plant will be making use of existing infrastructure — an earlier Samsung display production facility, to be more specific — which will help to reduce construction time and costs, according to the company. The 330,000-square-meter site is located around 25 kilometers north of Budapest.
The company’s decision to build an electric vehicle (EV) battery production plant in Hungary was reportedly motivated by a desire to fill out its capabilities and establish a presence in Europe. Samsung SDI already possesses production plants in Ulsan, Korea, and Xian, China.
“By launching construction for the plant in Hungary, we now can set up the global triangular production structure for electric vehicle batteries. We can especially provide higher quality services to European customers in Europe by generating synergy with SDIBS,” commented Executive Vice President Jeong SehWoong & Head of Automotive & ESS Business division.
The press release provides more: “Aiming to start commercial production in 2nd half of 2018, the company will build production lines with annual capacity of batteries for 50,000 pure electric vehicles, investing around 400 billion won. The Government of Hungary expressed strong commitment in supporting Samsung SDI’s activities in Hungary in order to ensure smooth implementation of the project.”
It’s just for 50,000 EVs, unfortunately, but that’s 50,000 more than could otherwise be build.
Going on: “In addition, the new plant in Hungary will enable the company to significantly reduce logistic costs while immediately responding to demand from customers since production bases of European automotive manufacturers are concentrated in Central and Eastern Europe. Moreover, the company will be able to sharpen its competitive edge in automotive battery industry by establishing integrated production system ranging from battery cells to packs, generating synergy with SDIBS (SDI Battery Systems, Austria), the production base of battery packs it acquired last year.”
Interesting news. Yet another reason that the German auto manufacturers should really step on the pedal with regard to EV and/or battery development, or risk getting left behind and losing market share.