Volkswagen, Bosch team up to equip battery cell gigafactories

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The venture would deliver battery production systems as well as assisting battery cell manufacturers in scaling up and maintaining their production sites, Volkswagen said in a statement.

“Europe has a one-time chance to become the global powerhouse for batteries in coming years,” Volkswagen board member Thomas Schmall, who is responsible for VW’s battery plans, said.

“We are working to build a complete, localised, European supply chain for ‘made in Europe’ e-mobility.”

Volkswagen plans on building a total of six so-called gigafactories, producing the cells which make up battery packs in Europe by the end of the decade, a key step in its bid to outdo Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) and become the world’s top seller of electric vehicles.

The first two plants, one in Sweden and one in Germany, are set to begin production in 2023 and 2025. Locations and start dates for the remaining four have not yet be disclosed, though possible locations include Spain and eastern Europe.

Still, the Bosch-Volkswagen joint venture would serve battery cell plants across Europe, the statement said, which are multiplying in number amid pressure from the European Union to become less dependent on Asia for battery supply.

German newspaper Handelsblatt reported in December that the two companies were also nearing an agreement to cooperate on automotive software, with Volkswagen planning to invest a triple-digit million euro amount. The companies declined to comment.

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