Featured Toyota, Stellantis to build EV-battery factories in North America

Discussion in 'Prius, Hybrid, EV and Alt-Fuel News' started by Gokhan, Oct 19, 2021.

  1. Gokhan

    Gokhan Senior Member

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    Toyota, Stellantis to Build EV-Battery Factories in North America - WSJ

    Toyota, Stellantis to Build EV-Battery Factories in North America

    Car makers accelerate push into the American electric-vehicle market as President Biden toughens fuel-efficiency standards


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    A Toyota electric vehicle at an auto show in April. The Japanese company aims to invest $3.4 billion through 2030 to build electric-car batteries in the U.S.
    PHOTO: HECTOR RETAMAL/AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE/GETTY IMAGES

    Toyota Motor Corp. TM 0.07% and Jeep parent Stellantis STLA -0.51% NV said separately Monday they would build battery factories in North America, the latest in a string of big-ticket investments by auto makers looking to sell more electric cars.

    Stricter fuel-efficiency targets set by the Biden administration, combined with broader efforts around the globe, are pushing car companies to spend tens of billions of dollars collectively on new factories for electric vehicles and the batteries to power them.

    Toyota said it planned to spend $3.4 billion through 2030 to build electric-car batteries in the U.S. Previously, it said it would spend roughly $9 billion building battery factories around the world as part of a $13.5 billion battery plan that includes research, but it hadn’t specified how much would be spent in the U.S.

    Toyota didn’t present a full breakdown on the U.S. spending, but it said it and an affiliated company would spend $1.29 billion on a new battery plant. The plant aims to start production in 2025 and create 1,750 new jobs, the company said.

    Separately, Stellantis said it was teaming up with LG Energy Solution, the battery-manufacturing arm of South Korea’s LG conglomerate, to build a new factory for lithium-ion batteries in North America. The companies didn’t disclose the size of investment, but said the plant would be able each year to produce batteries with a combined output of up to 40 gigawatt hours, enough to supply hundreds of thousands of EVs.

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    President Biden has challenged auto makers to ramp up sales of electric vehicles.
    PHOTO: MICHAEL BROCHSTEIN/ZUMA PRESS

    The announcements highlight the two main paths being taken by car makers on batteries. Some, like Toyota, plan to build many of their batteries in-house. Ford Motor Co. has also said it eventually would build its own batteries. Others, such as Stellantis and General Motors Co. , are teaming up with electronics manufacturers for their batteries.

    “We’ve got pretty good resources,” said Chris Reynolds, Toyota’s North American chief administrative officer. “That doesn’t mean we’ll never, ever have a partner. We’re always on the lookout for the right partner.”

    Toyota has been an EV skeptic compared with others in the industry, so its plans are an acknowledgment that pressure is building to develop and sell battery-powered cars.

    Earlier this year, Toyota said it planned to have 15 different battery-powered models to sell by 2025. It doesn’t sell any mass-market EVs in the U.S. yet but plans to have the first model ready next year. By 2030, Toyota hopes to be selling around two million electric vehicles a year globally, a figure that includes those powered both by batteries and by hydrogen fuel cells.

    Toyota’s competitors have bigger ambitions. GM plans to spend $35 billion on electric vehicles and battery plants through 2025. Stellantis, whose brands include Jeep, Ram and Chrysler, said it would spend $35.5 billion over the same period. By contrast, Toyota’s new U.S. battery plant will initially concentrate on producing batteries for hybrid models.

    Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda has criticized a push by governments around the world to ban or restrict the sale of gasoline-powered cars, saying it could cost millions of jobs and put the price of cars out of reach for most buyers.

    Related-video link: In-depth features—How VW is turning engine factories into EV-battery plants

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    Volkswagen is investing in electric vehicles more than other legacy car makers in the U.S. WSJ goes inside an engine factory that is being transformed into a battery plant as the German giant looks to change its image and become a rival to Tesla. Photo illustration: George Downs

    “I hear some politicians saying, ‘Let’s just make everything an electric car,’” Mr. Toyoda said at a September news conference in his capacity as head of Japan’s auto-industry association. “I don’t think that’s right.”

    Mr. Toyoda also said, “We can’t forget that carbon neutrality is also a jobs problem.”

    Many car makers and suppliers echo Toyota’s fear about electric-vehicle prices, which are mainly driven by the cost of lithium-ion batteries.

    Toyota has said it believes that over the next decade, the majority of its vehicles sold in the U.S. will be powered at least partly by a gasoline engine. The company says its hybrid vehicles, which combine an electric motor with a gasoline engine, offer the right combination of environmental friendliness and affordability by leaning more on long-established technology. Toyota says it has sold nearly 19 million hybrid vehicles since it introduced the Prius in 1997.

    The investment comes as Congress considers proposals to expand incentives to make electric vehicles more affordable, including offering buyers an additional rebate of up to $4,500 for battery-powered models built in the U.S. by unionized labor.

    Toyota and many other foreign-based auto makers don’t have unionized workers building vehicles in the U.S., meaning their electric models wouldn’t be eligible for the full incentives under the proposals unless their plants were organized. These foreign car companies have criticized the legislative proposals, saying they would disadvantage them relative to GM, Ford and Stellantis which have union-represented factory workforces in the U.S.

    “Whether you’re union or nonunion, if you’re contributing to carbon reduction then what you produce deserves fair and even treatment,” Toyota’s Mr. Reynolds said.

    —Ben Foldy contributed to this article.

    Write to Sean McLain at [email protected]

    Corrections & Amplifications

    Stellantis and LG Energy Solution plan to build a battery factory in North America. An earlier version of this article incorrectly said the companies planned to build one in the U.S. (Corrected on Oct. 18)

    Appeared in the October 19, 2021, print edition as 'Toyota and Stellantis Plan Battery Plants.'
     
  2. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    unless trump gets reelected :p
     
  3. hill

    hill High Fiber Member

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    weird . . . . Toyota continues to lobby against the EV push . . . . & yet this - touting battery investment.
    kinda schizophrenic
    maybe this supposed battery plant someday will only make packs for hybrids?
    .
     
  4. Zythryn

    Zythryn Senior Member

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    That was basically what the article said.
    Toyota’s “investment” is small compared to others. But it is better than nothing.
     
  5. Lee Jay

    Lee Jay Senior Member

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    Hope someone is "investing" in battery recycling plants. There's only so much reuse you can do. Eventually, it all has to be recycled or end up in a landfill.
     
  6. Gokhan

    Gokhan Senior Member

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    Unfortunately, currently lithium-ion battery recycling only minimally exists, which is a huge environmental problem that is going to grow exponentially. The lawmakers should be working on this, but they aren't.
     
  7. Lee Jay

    Lee Jay Senior Member

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    Lithium-Ion Battery Recycling Finally Takes Off in North America and Europe - IEEE Spectrum

    "Of the 180,000 metric tons of Li-ion batteries available for recycling worldwide in 2019, just a little over half were recycled."
     
  8. hill

    hill High Fiber Member

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    Guess that makes Nissan a bunch of liars, as they have already said that well over 90% of the EV Leaf is being recycled, since 2012
    Even most of the plastic junk on the inside of the car came from recycled products oh, not that many are fans of plastic Interiors.
    ;)
    What really cracks people up is that all of this hand-wringing about new-tech batteries being recyclable, yet how many decades went by before lead acid batteries became seriously recycled? That's right, the rate of recycling on new tech is much much faster than days of old.
    .
     
    #8 hill, Oct 20, 2021
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2021
  9. Lee Jay

    Lee Jay Senior Member

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    Since I don't remember a time when they weren't (about 50 years), what is the answer to this? I tried searches.
     
  10. hill

    hill High Fiber Member

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  11. Lee Jay

    Lee Jay Senior Member

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  12. hill

    hill High Fiber Member

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    Read the article, historically it hasn't been over 90%. So, yeah, still missing the point. It will happen with modern tech batteries as well. And at a faster rate. Red herring. Speaking of historical - feel free to carry on adversarally -
    .
     
  13. Gokhan

    Gokhan Senior Member

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  14. hill

    hill High Fiber Member

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    Maybe that's a good idea for the next marketing campaign;
    "Toyota - better than nothing"
    ;)
    Sorry, couldn't resist.
    .
     
    #14 hill, Oct 20, 2021
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2021
    vvillovv likes this.
  15. Lee Jay

    Lee Jay Senior Member

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    And 50% with lithium-ion, hence the need for improvement - and my comment.
     
  16. vvillovv

    vvillovv Senior Member

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    gotta love the current state of the market and the campaigns too.

    Yeah I know "Hard to Resist"
     
  17. Trollbait

    Trollbait It's a D&D thing

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    Lead acid batteries came out in the 1860's, and it was a century before recycling was considered for these toxic products.

    The first Li-ion batteries came to market in 1991. Their use in cars for traction packs happened in 2011. In 2019, half of the potential batteries got recycled. That is great progress.
     
  18. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    government needs to step in, not everything can be left to the free market
     
  19. bwilson4web

    bwilson4web BMW i3 and Model 3

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    The 'battery factory' is an attractive idea but it wasn't until the 2170 production started in Nevada that Tesla/Panasonic was manufacturing battery cells in the USA. The Model S/X were using 18650 cells imported from Japan so Nevada was initially a battery pack assembly factory. My concern is these announced battery factories might be just battery pack assembly lines, not true battery cell manufacturing.

    Bob Wilson
     
  20. austingreen

    austingreen Senior Member

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    The original gigafactory always had plans for cells to be produced there. Panasonic was highly involved with planning and helped finance it, and its involvement helped tesla get the tax breaks from Nevada. Still the 35 GWh of cell manufacturing, Panasonic planned and built are not enough and they added another $100M to bump it to 39 Gwh last year. Tesla is also buying cells from LG for use in china, and CATL for use in china and the US.

    The Stellates deal is for a factory with about as much production as giga Nevada 40 Gwh/year. It will use LG Chem cells, and LG Chem already produces cells in the US. They will build more production in the US to satisfy demand, it just makes sense.

    The Toyota $1.3 B plant will not be ready until 2025. That is plenty of time for partners to get cell lines built. Toyota already has a joint ventures with CATL and Panasonic. CATL's LFP batteries would likely be much less expensive than toyota's current hybrid and phev batteries. Given supply chain woes and toyota's production system favoring localized production, I would have to believe they will be north American made cells.

    CATL considers US plant, targets 45 percent energy-density boost in 5 years
     
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