Nikkei reports that Nissan, together with a Chinese partner, will invest over 200 billion yen ($1.8 billion) to build two new EV battery plants - one in Japan and one in the UK.
Production might start as early as 2024 with a goal to provide enough battery cells for 700,000 electric vehicles annually.
Nissan's partner for the battery joint venture will be Envision AESC (formerly AESC - Nissan and NEC's JV - acquired by the Envision Group in 2019, in which Nissan still holds a 20% share).
We already heard multiple times that Envision AESC intends to expand its battery business (including in Sunderland, UK).
Currently, Envision AESC has three plants with a total output of 7.5 GWh annually (enough for up to 200,000 EVs):
- Zama, Kanagawa, Japan - 2.6 GWh
- Smyrna, Tennessee, U.S. - 3.0 GWh
- Sunderland, UK - 1.9 GWh
- plus a 20 GWh investment inn Wuxi, China (but we don't know how it progresses)
According to the article, Envision AESC will operate the new battery plants and provide cells for the entire Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance. Together with existing plants, the company would be ready for up to 900,000 EVs annually.
A key factor to trigger the investments appears to be subsidies from local governments:
"Envision is the world's seventh-largest supplier of EV batteries. With the new factories in Japan and the U.K., the company aims to raise its capacity, turning out enough cells to power 900,000 EVs a year. Envision will also contribute funding for the plant. Nissan is considering joint investments and using subsidies from the Japanese and U.K. governments to help finance the project."
Aside from that, Nissan is expected to source at least part of the battery cells from other manufacturers like CATL or LG Chem's LG Energy Solution.
"Nissan appears to be aiming to tie up with other leading battery manufacturers, including China's Contemporary Amperex Technology, or CATL, and South Korea's LG Chem to build new plants."