China’s Contemporary Amperex Technology Co. (CATL) is reportedly looking at a minimum of two locations for future battery factories in Mexico. Reports claim that the upcoming facilities will be built to provide batteries for both Tesla and Ford.
While most global automakers are now moving forward with EVs, Tesla is still the global leader, and Ford is considered by many – including Tesla CEO Elon Musk – as an emerging leader in the segment.
According to a report by Automotive News, CATL is looking at a site in the city of Ciudad Juarez in Chihuahua. It's also reportedly considering Saltillo, Coahuila, as a second option. However, it's important to note that the information came from sources familiar with the matter, who requested to remain anonymous.
The people who shared the details said CATL may spend up to $5 billion on the Mexico-based battery project. They also noted that the battery manufacturer may decide to split the investment between Mexico and the US, with one future battery factory in each country.
Ciudad Juarez would be an ideal location for CATL thanks to being close to a port of entry into New Mexico. It would make it relatively easy for the battery manufacturer to supply Tesla's Gigafactory in Austin with batteries.
Reports also suggest that CATL could choose to manufacture the battery cells in Mexico, and then move them to Kentucky to put them into battery packs for Tesla and Ford. However, despite recent reports suggesting that CATL may be considering a battery factory in Kentucky, the company hasn't yet substantiated the claims.
The China-based battery maker currently controls over 30 percent of the electric car battery business across the globe. It has been looking at the potential for a US battery factory for a number of years, though nothing has materialized due in part to political complications between the US and China.
CATL and Ford wouldn't provide Automotive News with any specific comments on the situation at the time of the writing, and Tesla didn't respond.
Source: Automotive News