LG Chem to triple EV battery production in Poland

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LG Chem’s EV battery plant in Poland is currently operating with an annual production capacity of 100.000 batteries. However, due to an expected massive shift to electric cars from European automakers during the next decade, LG Chem already plans to soon triple the annual production capacity to 300.000 units.

How soon we don’t know yet, but I guess that we can say by 2020/2021. That’s when European automakers will finally have to get more serious about electric cars – in order to comply with tighter EU emissions standards.


LG Chem EV battery global production


While in China Volkswagen chose CATL, in Europe Volkswagen will probably choose LG Chem as its EV battery cell supplier for the MEB platform. However, in the near future it seems that the upcoming second generation Renault Zoe and the 2019 Nissan Leaf will use most of LG Chem’s EV battery production capacity in Europe.

Nonetheless, LG Chem isn’t the only battery cell maker trying to strengthen its ties with European automakers.

Samsung SDI’s battery cell production in Hungary will start this quarter, so you can expect the much awaited battery capacity upgrade (42,62 kWh) for the BMW i3 to be announced in early summer. Furthermore, SK innovation is building its new EV battery plant in Europe (Hungary).


South Korean battery cell makers bet in Europe is due to several reasons such as:

  • European automakers will have to produce more electric cars soon to comply with tighter EU emissions standards by 2020/2021.
  • U.S. Federal Government isn’t interested in electric cars, nor in renewable energies. Trump is a very smart guy that discovered how to make “very clean” coal. Somebody give this man a Nobel prize already!
  • In China, the Government favors domestic companies. South Korean battery cell makers can’t compete with CATL and BYD.


Anyway, it’s common knowledge that if we want to know what a company or group of companies are preparing to do, we should look at their suppliers first. The bet of South Korean battery cell makers in European production is a clear sign that good things will come.


Thanks for the head ups Michał.



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This Post Has 22 Comments

  1. I’m really curious about the date, when will this factory produce batteries really?
    And how quickly can they ramp up the production numbers?
    What will happen to the production of the 60kWh Leaf (and through it’s possible delay, what will happen with the 40kWh Leaf), if the Brexit will happen before this factory could produce enough cells?

    1. LG Chem is already behind schedule. Initial plans were to start production in late 2017. I think that any day now they’ll announce that production has finally started.

      Renault really needs LG Chem’s help to increase Zoe’s production as soon as possible.

    2. Even with a hard Brexit on March 29th 2019, it seems possible nothing will actually change for another 21 months, till the end of 2021. A sign that not only fools rule that island today, but also more time for Nissan to plan a possible production relocation within the EU and for the rest of mainland Europe EV supply chain to prepare and scale for the next decade needs.

    3. Actually there is sentence in linked article that production already begun earlier this year. Regarding second stage od invenstment – increased capacity – there was 2020 date suggested by Polish press but indeed first stage was slightly late and socondly end of investment process not necessary means production start.

  2. Most production of that factory will go to the 60kWh Leaf variant that will be launched this fall.

    1. Very interesting, thanks for sharing it Jeff.

  3. Thanks for the news. Korean companies should speed up their expansion plan in Europe, get as much market shares as possible also enjoy more government grants. It will be too late if Chinese companies further growth, develop and build massive plants in Europe in the future. According to the latest prospectus of CATL, it is already ranked number 1 in the world by selling 12Gwh batteries in 2017, surpassed Panasonic.

  4. that’s why I love your website.. reading news no one else deems interesting 😉

    cheers and keep it up!!

    1. It is going to happen. Just have a look of the top ten lithium-ion battery producers (in terms of Gwh delivered) of 2017, except Panasonic#2, LG Chem#5 and Samsung SDI#7, all of remaining are Chinese companies. The Chinese government are pushing very hard to promote new energy vehicles, even paying hard cash for automobile enterprise for each NEV sold. On the other hand, limiting foreign battery producers exposure in China by excluding NEV powered with foreign battery producers from getting any subsidies. Most importantly, the automobile market in China is the largest in the world and larger than 2nd, 3rd, 4th combined. That’s why China has the power (but not Japan, they prefer hybrid) and is seizing this chance tightly to set the new direction of the car industry. 10-15 years later, China will export NEVs or NEVs key components like Germany, USA do for their ICE vehicles nowadays.

  5. Hmm… I think you are right.
    But not in 10-15years… The leapfrog strategy works, and they will do it in 4-8years.
    I have read somewhere, that the near-future automotive evolution is not automotive scaled any more. It’s scaled just like the mobile phones and the IT world. Also works here the Moore’s Law, and the lifecycle of the EVs is spinned up.

  6. AY, can you share the list of major battery makers, cited in your post?

  7. By the way, please mention the correlation between this news about capacity ramping and VW news about signing contracts for battery supply in Europe. So^ I think Pedro can change “Volkswagen will probably choose LG Chem” for “Volkswagen has likely chosen LG Chem”

    1. I have also read about the CATL announcement.
      Taking out the numbers: the sold 12GWh and earned $629.000.000.
      The simple division gives ~52$/kWh.
      If they give this price to VW also…
      That will make LG very sad…

    2. Interesting data, AY, thank you
      But let me mention that indicated 11.84 is looking to be overall volumes, while Panasonic has 10+ only for electric cars. I’m not sure that Panasonic can boast of significant supplies for electric buses and stationary BESS, so maybe they have a kind of parity…

  8. It’s dispaointing that LG chose Poland for his new plant. Indeed, battery production is quite electricity intensive, hence the impact of the carbon intensity of the used electricity has a major impact on the environmental impact (carbon intensity) of the cell manufactured (see : https://www.ivl.se/english/startpage/top-menu/pressroom/press-releases/press-releases—arkiv/2017-06-21-new-report-highlights-climate-footprint-of-electric-car-battery-production.html).
    Poland has one of the highest carbon intensive electricity production of the EU28 (around 900gCO2/kWh when average is around 400-450 g).
    A very bad choice when the whole point of EV is reduce the CO2 impact of vehicles…

    1. that simply shows us how dirty are the mind of the CEO on any industry.

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