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Envision AESC, a prominent Japanese manufacturer of automotive batteries, will increase its annual production capacity to 400 gigawatt-hours in 2026, roughly 20 times its present capacity, by constructing new plants in six countries.

The CEO of Envision AESC, Shoichi Matsumoto, disclosed the proposal in an interview with The Yomiuri Shimbun. The company situated in Zama, Kanagawa Prefecture, presently supplies automotive batteries to major automakers, including Nissan Motor Co.

As major automakers transfer their attention to electric vehicles (EVs), investment in automotive batteries is growing.

According to the interview, Envision AESC intends to increase its production capacity to provide batteries for 5,7 million to 6,7 million EVs, each of which requires a 60- to 70-kilowatt-hour battery.

The company expects to become the largest automotive battery manufacturer in Japan as a result of its plan to construct battery facilities in six countries around the globe.

Mercedes-Benz and BMW have consented to receive batteries manufactured in two newly constructed U.S. facilities.

The company also intends to construct facilities in China, Great Britain, France, and Spain.

Ibaraki Prefecture in Japan is presently constructing a new facility with an investment of 50 billion. The facility is anticipated to begin bulk production in the spring of 2024. The company intends to provide its automotive batteries to Nissan, Honda Motor Co., and Mazda Motor Corp. The plant will manufacture a new form of automotive battery that will provide greater range than conventional batteries.

To increase the use of electric vehicles, nations that want a domestic supply of automotive batteries are paying close attention to how to secure this essential component. The U.S. government provides tax incentives for electric vehicles if a certain proportion of their battery components are manufactured and assembled in North America.

Envision AESC intends to situate its facilities in order to take advantage of assistance programs in various nations.

Panasonic Holdings Corporation has an 8.5% share of the global market for automotive batteries, the largest share of any Japanese manufacturer, whereas Envision AESC has a share of less than 1%.

Panasonic also intends to triple or quadruple its present 50 gigawatt-hour capacity by fiscal year 2028. Chinese and South Korean manufacturers, who hold a larger proportion of the global market, are also eager to invest in capacity expansion.

Envision AESC was founded in 2007 as a partnership between Nissan and NEC Corp. Since 2019, it has been a subsidiary of China’s Envision Group. Nissan is still a shareholder in the corporation.

By Sanjh

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