Samsung SDI intends to expand its battery pack production capacity at its Michigan plant, which it acquired from Magna Steyr in 2015, according to The Elec. Samsung SDI acquired the plant for $62.7 million, and the plant has been producing battery packs since 2018 and is currently at 100 percent capacity utilization, the report said. The cells used in the plant come from Samsung SDI’s plant in Hungary.
However, due to growing demand (especially for the Stellantis plug-in hybrid model), Samsung SDI expects to add a new battery pack production line at the plant. Reports indicate that this upgrade may require an investment of $30 million.
Although Samsung SDI’s plant is not considered a super factory, the company’s move still sends a signal that the battery market is growing and expanding in all directions, including existing battery pack assembly facilities.
Samsung SDI’s largest project in the U.S. is a mega-factory in Kokomo, Indiana, with an investment of more than $2.5 billion, a joint venture with Stellantis. If all goes well, the plant should be operational in the first half of 2025, with an initial capacity of 23 GWh per year.
Samsung SDI supplies batteries to a number of automakers, including BMW. The company is developing 46xx cells (i.e. cells with a diameter of 46 mm), which means they could get a big contract from BMW and possibly even from Tesla.
Samsung SDI will likely set up more projects in North America in the future, given that sales of electric vehicles are rising rapidly and the trend toward local production of key components such as batteries, chips and other advanced technologies.