BMW Group announced that its new Hungarian plant in Debrecen (under construction for about six months), in addition to vehicle production, will also produce high-voltage battery packs.
The site has been envisioned as the EV factory that will produce next-generation electric cars, based on the Neue Klasse architecture starting in 2025.
One of the key elements of the Neue Klasse is the use of cylindrical lithium-ion battery cells (in 4695 and 46120 sizes), which are expected to boost the driving range by 30%.
Production of vehicles and battery packs at the same site is a cost-saving decision from a logistics perspective.
The German manufacturer intends to invest in this new manufacturing plant more than €2 billion ($2 billion) by 2025.
"In Debrecen, the next-generation round battery cells will be assembled into a battery housing – a metal frame, which is later integrated into the underbody of the car. The official start of production for the sixth generation high-voltage batteries will be in 2025 – in parallel with the start of vehicle production. All batteries for the vehicles from Plant Debrecen will be assembled on site. The new production facility will extend over an area of about 140,000 m². Construction work recently began."
The location of the plant in Hungary is not accidental. BMW Group's partners from China will produce lithium-ion battery cells in the country as well.
CATL already announced that a massive 100 GWh battery factory will be built in Debrecen, which will supply also other manufacturers.
EVE Energy also will build a battery factory in Europe, but the location has not been yet confirmed.
In the US, the BMW Group is launching a similar project in South Carolina, where through a $1.7 billion investment the company will produce at least six fully electric BMW X models and battery packs (6th generation, cylindrical cells, supplied by Envision AESC).
Milan Nedeljković, a member of the Board of Management of BMW AG, Production, said:
“In Debrecen, we are building the most advanced plant in the world. With our iFACTORY, we are setting new industry standards for vehicle production. Our investments underline our systematic approach to implementing e-mobility.”