This week, Bosch announced officially began producing of electric vehicle motors at its Charleston, SC facility. The company plans to invest $260 million more to further expand production of EV components at the site, and expects to create at least 350 high-paying manufacturing jobs in the region by 2025.
“We have grown our electrification business globally and here in the North American region,” said Mike Mansuetti, president of Bosch in North America. “We’ve invested more than $6 billion dollars in electromobility development and in 2021 our global orders for electromobility surpassed $10 billion dollars for the first time. Local production helps to advance our customers’ regional electrification strategies, and further supports the market demand for electrification.”
Bosch is making rotors and stators at Charleston, currently, in an area that covers nearly 200,000 square feet of the existing campus.
The company says the expansion will allow them to support the additional e-mobility business they’ve recently acquired, but admit that the plant will require further expansion to meet future demand. As such, there are plans to add an additional 75,000 square feet over the next few years.
“As more electrified solutions come to the market, the strong footprint and skilled workforce in South Carolina is well established to help organizations bring these solutions to the market,” said South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster. “We are grateful for another strong commitment from Bosch to our state.”
What About the Hydrogen?
Bosch announced plans to expand its hydrogen business in South Carolina in September, and seemed quiet about plans in this latest press release, saying only that “Bosch has continued to invest in its presence in South Carolina. To move ahead the vision of sustainable mobility, Bosch announced its fuel cell stack production lately in August in Anderson, South Carolina, as part of a more than $200 million investment also expected to create at least 350 new jobs by the start of production in 2026.” Which isn’t nothing – but seems a bit light, really, considering that Bosch has been in the hydrogen fuel cell business since at least 2019, when the company partnered with Powercell to develop fuel cell stacks for vehicles like the Nikola electric semi. Bosch later stepped back its partnership with Nikola in the wake of SEC fraud allegations leveled against the company’s then-CEO, Trevor Milton.
So, what do you guys think? Is Bosch switching gears and committing to fully electric manufacturing, or is it just – let’s say, strategically omitting its fuel cell plans in SC? Scroll on down to the comments and let us know your take.
Source | Images: Gov. of South Carolina’s Office.
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