GM to Invest $30 Million in New LIthium Battery Plant

Plant to begin production of battery packs for Chevrolet Volt extened-range electric car in 2010.

Published: 21-Jan-2009

DETROIT - General Motors Corp will invest $30 million in its planned U.S. plant that will build next-generation batteries for its all-electric Chevrolet Volt, the head of GM's flagship Chevrolet brand said on Tuesday.

The facility, scheduled to open in Michigan in 2010, will assemble lithium-ion battery cells manufactured by South Korea's LG Chem Ltd into 400-pound packs, which will power the heavily touted Volt plug-in car.

"We chose Chevy because we can't be niche with the Volt. We have to make it a mass-production vehicle," Ed Peper, North American vice president of GM's Chevrolet brand, said at the Automotive News World Congress in Detroit.


The battery system was developed by CSIRO in Australia, built by the Furukawa Battery Company of Japan and tested in the United Kingdom through the American-based Advanced Lead-Acid Battery Consortium.

The new batteries will make the GM Hybrid System nearly three times more powerful than the system it replaces. Pictured is 2009 Saturn Vue Green Line with Two-mode hybrid drive.

Dramatic developments in stored-power technology make electric cars more viable than ever. Pictures is Th!nk Global's new Ox crossover vehicle.


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