Mercedes-Benz To Have 5 Battery Factories In Operation Likely By 2019

1 month ago by Mark Kane 24

Daimler’s second battery factory in Kamenz – a fourfold increase is planned of the battery production and logistics area – up to around 80,000 m2;

To supply batteries for its entire lineup of electric vehicles, Daimler intends to operate five battery pack assembly plants, on three continents by 2019 – three in Germany, one in U.S. and one in China.

Groundbreaking at ACCUMOTIVE in Kamenz for one of the world’s biggest and most modern battery factories

Having several plants will enable the German group to react quickly and efficiently to local market demands, with the option to export batteries if required.

In total, the battery investment alone will require over one billion euros.

While Daimler is expanding battery pack production, the lithium-ion cells themselves are supplied by various third-party suppliers, which could still potentially cause a bottleneck if future demand is not accurately forecast.

The first and second facility (of which, is under construction now) are in Kamenz, Germany.

“Deutsche Accumotive GmbH & Co. KG., a wholly owned subsidiary of Daimler AG founded in 2009, is the nucleus for the development and production of highly complex batteries for hybrid and electric vehicles of the Mercedes-Benz and smart brands as well as for commercial vehicles. Accumotive is based in Nabern in the Stuttgart metropolitan area, where its research and development facilities are also located. Production is in Kamenz. The company employs a total workforce of more than 500 people. Accumotive cooperates closely with affiliate Mercedes-Benz Energy GmbH, responsible in Kamenz for the development and worldwide sales of Mercedes-Benz energy storage units for private and industrial applications.

Daimler is currently investing some 500 million euros in the construction of a second battery factory in Kamenz, significantly increasing the production capacities as a result. The new battery factory in Kamenz, just under 50 kilometres from Dresden, is slated to go into operation already in 2018. Covering an area of around 20 hectares, the site is right next to the existing battery factory. The new plant will quadruple the production and logistics space in Kamenz to a total of around 80,000 m2. By the end of the decade, Accumotive will have over 1,000 employees in Nabern and Kamenz, more than double the current number.

The second battery factory is designed as a CO2-neutral factory: Daimler’s approach to electric mobility is an integrated one, attaching key importance to sustainability already at the production stage. The production facilities will be supplied with energy from a combined heat and power plant and a photovoltaic plant in combination with stationary battery storage units. With state-of-the-art equipment and technologies, the new battery factory will also set standards with regard to Industry 4.0.”

Mercedes-Benz Concept EQA

A third plant in Germany is to be built in Stuttgart-Untertürkheim.

“An additional battery production site will be the Mercedes-Benz Untertürkheim Plant. In future, for example the vehicle plant in Sindelfingen will be supplied with batteries from Untertürkheim for electric vehicles of the EQ product and technology brand. The battery production will be located in the Brühl satellite plant.”

Recently Daimler announced $1 billion investment in a manufacturing plant in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.

While, a fifth battery plant, operated with BAIC, will be in Beijing, China.

“In China, Daimler is creating an important prerequisite for the local production of EQ branded electric vehicles with the erection of an additional battery plant. The new factory is a project of Beijing Benz Automotive Co., Ltd. (BBAC), the German-Chinese joint venture between Daimler and BAIC Motor. The partners are investing nine figures (euros) in the battery production facilities.”

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24 responses to "Mercedes-Benz To Have 5 Battery Factories In Operation Likely By 2019"

  1. Tman says:

    They would need it.The 5 battery pack plants combined may be less that 1/5th of Tesla’s gigafactory if one extrapolated Tesla’s $5billion compared to MB’s $1billion.

    1. john doe says:

      They assemble battery packs. They don’t need the climate controlled environment for cell production, they don’t need anything that has to do with chemicals, mixers, foil handling equipment, applicators, dryers and so on.
      They make highly automated production lines, that assembles the battery cells. That cost a lot, but a lot less then investing in cell production.
      They are also able to switch to the newest cell technology, without investing money in the development.
      It China choose to take over cell production, like they did with solar – it is cheaper to buy cells.
      But Tesla that make other battery products as well, may be better off with making cells and batteries.
      Especially when they plan very high output.
      To manufacture battery cells is a fairly low profit business, unless you make a lot. Then there is good profit to be made.
      With EVs profit margins are going to be lower. Not just for the car, but also for the maintenance of the vehicle. A regular EV just have to service/change brakes, shocks, springs, AC, bushings, wheel bearings and a few other things. No oil changes, no transmission service/dual mass flywheels, exhaust.

      1. e says:

        The problem I see there is China will think of China first, always China first.

        If the demand in China climbs fast enough the outsiders will have to wait.

        1. Ron M says:

          China supports there renewable energy and electric vehicle industry the GOP fought to undermine it. Trump is a cheerleader against EV’s energy efficiency and renewables

        2. Ben says:

          China first = exports first, because exports accelerate an economy more than own use. Exports finance mass production. A big part of China is still living in medieval condition, even if the level of its high technology is on par with other industrial nations. China will export a lot of cells and nobody will be able to compete in price.

      2. Tman says:

        Good point

  2. Chris Stork says:

    OK, so Benz has the Gigafactory; Porsche has the Supercharger; Audi has the Autopilot; BMW has the ???.

    Do we have to buy one of each and they combine Voltron-style into MekkaWagen, the Tesla Killer?

  3. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

    So, MB is spending lots of money on battery pack assembly plants, but still leaves itself at the mercy of 3rd party suppliers for its supply of battery cells.

    Looks like a foolish business plan to me.

    1. MikeG says:

      They’re betting that battery cells will be a commodity item so they only have to concentrate on assembling the packs.
      OTOH, M-B may find that they cannot scale as quickly to meet unexpected demand as they could if they produced the cells themselves.

      1. SJC says:

        Each company should do what they do best, if you make cars well then that is what you should do. Perhaps you are not so good at making battery cells but can assemble packs just like cars. Cells will be a commodity, count on it.

        1. stimpacker says:

          Cheap low cost, low quality, Chinese-made solar panels may be 1% less efficient. That doesn’t bother me. My meter still runs backwards.

          Cheap low cost, low quality, Chinese-made toys, everyday household item, consumer electronics may break easily. That doesn’t bother me. I’ll simply replace whatever breaks.

          Cheap low cost, low quality, Chinese-made COMMODITY li-ion batteries in my Mercedes bothers me a LOT!

          1. SJC says:

            No one ever said MB would use cheap Chinese batteries. They will have a pack plant there, that is all.

            1. Stimpacker says:

              In my line of work, we try so hard to prevent unauthorized parts from entering the supply chain but you don’t have full control over your vendor’s actions.

              That’s what using commodity parts mean.

              1. SJC says:

                A commodity is something from several vendors with consistent quality. Wheat is a commodity but there are quality grades.

          2. john Doe says:

            They buy from south korea, just like the other German brands. LG and Samsung is their source for cells.
            At the moment China produce 55% of global cells, while the US 10%, the rest is Korea, Japan and a few % in Europe. That will change, as battery cell production is on the rise in Europe. Still a minor player.
            China is expected to rise to 60% soon.

            The EU is considering investing 30 billion in a battery cell manufacturing cooperation.
            Car manufacturers in Europe will work together in this company. They want an Airbus for the battery industry.
            Time will tell what happens. It might be a good plan to invest together, so they can go very large and keep costs down.
            Battery cell production (just like the assy. of batteries) are highly automated. Things like electricity costs and taxes are more important then labour costs.

            I think China want to dominate this business, and can give their manufacturers advantages like cheaper electricity, very low taxes and support of some kind.
            No matter what happens, prices will go down.

    2. Mark Baum says:

      Do you think Apple is foolish by letting TSMC and Samsung produce their SoCs?
      I’m asking for a friend

    3. eltosho says:

      The germans have no choice but to do that. Producing battery cells in Europe will never be economiacal. There are simply no resources for it in Europe.
      That’s also the reson they hate EVs so much. They know that they will be screwed big time when the ICE dies and thay can’t do anything about it. In 10 years time the entire german automotive industry will be reduced to assembly plants for chinese parts….

      1. john doe says:

        You can produce battery cells wherever you want.
        It is highly automated.
        Labour costs, or access to raw materials is not the problem.
        Need cheap electricity, fair taxes and high volume production.
        We had a small cell manufacturing system at school, which was fully automated. That is. . We had to add the ingredients by hand (but factories have this step automated).
        When the chemicals are mixed, they are “painted” on the film, rolled, placed in a tube, filled up and the tube is sealed.
        A test machine like this can make a few dusin an hour. Hence it has a price a small university can handle.

        It is an easy operation. Nothing new, and equipment anybody with money can buy from several suppliers.

        Still, you have to be big to be competetive. Or else you have to make niche products with lower volumes and higher margins.

        There is a reason Tesla need to scale up production.
        Lower cost per unit. Like all mass produced items.

        I think China will give massive tax cuts, and super cheap electricity for their manufacturers.
        I think one of the main reasons the korean companies are setting up cell production in Europe is to drop import tax to the EU.

  4. Ron M says:

    Trump is still trying to kill renewable even if he has to subsides coal and nuclear. I guess he’s thinks he can stop innovation and return the world to the 50’s

    1. Greg says:

      Trump this, trump that. Are you retarded?

      The article is about battery production in Europe.

      Ohhh noooo! An eclipse of the sun! That’s Trump’s fault!

      1. Clive says:

        Greg you absolutely made my day!

      2. SJC says:

        Don’t insult, who runs countries and what they do has a HUGE impacts.

  5. Hauer says:

    The headline is wrong. These are NOT BATTERY factories.

    The wording in the article is OK. But who reads the articles these days?

    1. GSP says:

      Actually, they are battery factories.

      By definition, it takes multiple cells connected together to make a battery.

      The individual cells are made elsewhere, but it would be more accurate to describe those facilities as “battery cell factories,” since they do not actually make batteries.

      GSP

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