Chinese major state-owned automaker GAC Motor is set to produce batteries developed on its own to ensure supplies for its rapidly expanding electric-vehicle output.
The move will make GAC the second Chinese EV maker, after BYD Co., to build batteries for its own electric vehicles. It plans to build a battery plant with an investment of up to 10.9 billion yuan ($1.58 billion) in the south China city of Guangzhou, GAC said.
With construction set to begin at the end of the year, the factory is expected to produce 26.8 gigawatt-hours of batteries annually in 2025. It will initially produce lithium iron phosphate batteries.
The plant will first supply batteries to GAC’s EV subsidiary Aion New Energy Vehicle Co. and other affiliates. At a later stage, it will supply outside customers, according to GAC’s plan.
Light vehicle sales in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) recorded about 250,000 units in July 2022, an increase of 53 percent compared with July 2021. In the year to date (YTD), the market increased 24 percent to about 1.81 million units. The ASEAN market is projected to increase 3.6 percent to 2.87 million units in 2022.
GAC, based in Guangzhou, produced 125,140 full electric vehicles, including sedans and crossovers, under the Aion brand in the first seven months of the year, a jump of 138 percent from a year earlier. Sales of Aion-badged EVs spiked 135 percent to 125,284 vehicles during the same period
GAC also operates Chinese passenger vehicle joint ventures with Toyota Motor Corp., Honda Motor Co. and Mitsubishi Motors.
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