BMW finds location for battery assembly plant in Bavaria

BMW has found and bought the plot for its battery assembly plant in Bavaria. The carmaker secured a 105-hectare area in the communities of Straßkirchen and Irlbach in Lower Bavaria, about 50 kilometres north of BMW’s largest European car plant in Dingolfing.
The plant will supply all of BMW’s car plants in Bavaria with high-voltage batteries for its “New Class” electric car model series. Battery production is not planned. The carmaker will get its cells from Hungary, saying the previous strategy of not setting up its own series production for battery cells has proven itself and offers the best result for the next generation.

BMW will use round cells for its “New Class” vehicles from 2025, which will be launched in the middle of the decade, following Tesla’s lead. The carmaker previously commissioned CATL and Eve Energy to build two gigafactories each in Europe and China. The corresponding CATL plant is being built in Debrecen, Hungary, where BMW plans to build the first models based on the New Class in a new plant – a dedicated high-voltage assembly line is currently being built there to supply the vehicle plant with battery packs.

“The newly-developed sixth generation of our lithium-ion cells will bring a huge leap in technology that will increase energy density by more than 20 per cent, improve charging speed by up to 30 per cent and enhance range by up to 30 per cent,” Frank Weber, member of the Board of Management of BMW AG responsible for Development, had described the switch to the new cell format when it was introduced.

Construction will start early next year, and BMW expects the plant to go online in 2026. The company will use only half of the plot in the first phase of construction, saving the rest for expansion. Residents are already collecting signatures against the plant.

spiegel.de, heise.de (both in German)

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