Panasonic picks site for third US battery plant

Panasonic picks site for third US battery plant

According to a source familiar with the plan, Panasonic is considering building a factory to produce batteries for electric vehicles in the US state of Oklahoma.

If the plan is formalized, it would be the third electric vehicle battery plant in the US, after Nevada and Kansas, to be opened by the Japanese manufacturer, a major supplier to Tesla Inc.

Panasonic and the Oklahoma government entered into an agreement setting out the terms under which the electronics company would qualify for a subsidy if it built the plant.

A Panasonic official said that it is true that they finalized the deal, but they still need to decide on other details.

Furthermore, the source said that Oklahoma is only one of the candidate locations for the new factory and that the agreement does not guarantee any investment from the Japanese company.

Panasonic, which together with Tesla, runs its Gigafactories battery factory in Nevada, announced last July that it would invest up to about four billion dollars in constructing another factory in Kansas.

Although the Kansas plant has yet to begin operations, the company plans to increase its production capacity of electric vehicle batteries to 150 to 200 gigawatts by the fiscal year 2028, three to four times its current capacity.

The move comes as Panasonic and other battery makers rush to increase production capacity in the US after predicting that demand for car batteries will grow rapidly as the electric vehicle market expands. 

Honda and LG jointly start a battery factory

Japanese automaker Honda and South Korean battery maker LG Energy Solution will invest $4.4 billion to build a new battery plant in the US as pressure grows in Washington to shut China out of the electric vehicle supply chain.

It will be Honda’s first battery production facility in the US, and the Japanese company has committed to ending the production of fossil fuel vehicles by 2040, the Financial Times reports. Asian car and battery manufacturers have signed several investment deals in the US, which are tightening environmental regulations. Last week, California passed a decision to stop the sale of new gasoline-powered vehicles until 2035.