Volkswagen is actually building the group’s very first cell factory in Salzgitter, Germany. The factory is supposed to be the starting point for global battery offensive, with six cell factories foreseen in Europe and the prospect of further factories in North America in the future. Production in Salzgitter will start in 2025. Responsibility for global battery business is to be held by the newly created company “PowerCo”, which is in charge for activities along the entire battery value chain. Up to 2030, PowerCo is to invest more than €20 billion together with partners in the development of the business area, to generate annual sales in excess of €20 billion and to employ up to 20,000 people in Europe alone.
Volkswagen cell factory in Salzgitter: the ground breaking ceremony
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz attended the ground breaking ceremony. “Today is a good day for the automotive industry in Germany and Europe”, he said. “Volkswagen is showing how the future of sustainable, climate-compatible mobility could look. Together, we are laying the foundation for shaping this future to a significant extent in Salzgitter”.
Herbert Diess, CEO of Volkswagen AG, added: “Today we are not only laying a foundation stone but also marking a strategic milestone. The battery cell business is one of the cornerstones of our NEW AUTO strategy which will make Volkswagen a leading provider of the sustainable, software-driven mobility of tomorrow. Establishing our own cell factory is a megaproject in technical and economic terms. It shows that we are bringing the leading-edge technology of the future to Germany!”.
The Salzgitter plant will have a capacity of 40 kWh
Following Salzgitter, the next cell factory is to be established at Valencia. Sites are currently being identified for three further cell factories in Europe. Volkswagen also unveiled the prismatic unified cell announced at the Power Day in 2021. This allows the flexible use of a raft of different cell chemistries and will be used in up to 80 percent of all Group models. At Salzgitter, unified cells for the volume segment are to be produced from 2025 onwards. In future, the plant is to reach an annual capacity of 40 GWh – enough for about 500,000 electric vehicles.
PowerCo is to be managed by CEO Frank Blome and Board Members Sebastian Wolf (Chief Operations Officer), Kai Alexander Müller (Chief Financial Officer), Soonho Ahn (Chief Technology Officer), Jörg Teichmann (Chief Purchasing Officer) and Sebastian Krapoth (Chief Human Resources Officer).