[ET NEWS] Hyundai Motor is building its own production lines for automotive batteries as part of its recent push for emissions-free vehicles, according to industry sources on May 28.
The Korean auto giant that has been hiring several researchers on battery development and production since early this year plans to set up the lines within its research lab in Euiwang, Gyeonggi Province. It has also recently placed orders with multiple equipment makers.
Hyundai Ioniq EV
The key purpose seems to be to reduce its dependence on battery suppliers in order to speed up its green-car push. Currently, the carmaker uses batteries from LG Chem and SK Innovation.
Its global rivals have already been pouring resources to secure batteries and related technologies. Japan’s Toyota and Nissan own their own battery-making units, while Germany’s BMW operates its own production lines for battery cells.
Sources predict the initial production volume would be less than 1 Gwh, which will power an equivalent of hundreds of vehicles per year. Their mass-market adoption is likely to come in about two years starting from some new hybrid models that use low-density batteries.
A Hyundai spokesperson admitted the carmaker is building battery production lines but denied any plans to use the batteries for its own vehicles.
By Park Tae-joon and Jung Hyeon-jeong
This story was co-produced by ET News and The Investor.