Skoda Is Hopeful VW Group Will Establish New Battery Gigafactory In Czech Republic
Skoda expects the Volkswagen Group to confirm the location of its fourth European battery factory by 2023 and is hopeful the site will be located in the Czech Republic.
The VW Group has previously said that the fourth of its planned six European battery factories will be located in either Hungary, Poland, Slovakia, or the Czech Republic. It had originally planned on finalizing a location for the factory in the first half of 2022 but that hasn’t come to fruition.
“The decision will be taken in Wolfsburg in Germany,” Skoda production and logistics chief Michael Oeljeklaus recently told Auto News Europe. “We are hoping and are confident that this decision will be taken in late autumn, maybe next year at the latest… We are hoping that VW will decide in favor of the Czech Republic.”
While Skoda awaits VW’s decision, it recently started manufacturing battery systems for EVs based on the MEB platform at its Mladá Boleslav plant in the Czech Republic.
The car manufacturer’s headquarters is the only production site outside Germany where VW’s MEB battery systems are manufactured. These systems don’t just include the battery module itself but also a battery housing with an integrated cooling system, a battery management system and all electrical connections.
This assembly site will soon be producing more than 250,000 MEB battery systems each year and at the end of 2023, production will ramp up to more than 380,000 systems after the second expansion stage comes online.
“Today is a very special day for Skoda Auto: By launching the production of MEB battery systems, we are now manufacturing the absolute key component at the heart of the company,” Oeljeklaus added. “This means we have achieved another goal towards our successful transition to electromobility. I would like to thank the entire team who have worked very hard over recent months to set up this new production line. We have invested around 130 million euros and can now produce more than 250,000 MEB battery systems a year – for ŠKODA’s e-models and those of other Group brands. Our objective is clear: we want to produce E-components or E-vehicles at all three Czech plants by 2030.”