Honda and its partner LG Energy Solutions have broken ground on their first joint venture battery production location in the United States.
Honda is far from a leader in the electric vehicles market, but with a series of investments, they hope to change that over the next decade. That has started with investments into electric drivetrain production, and now, its first battery production facility, which it has started construction on today.
The $4.4 billion facility in Ohio is Honda’s first battery plant in North America, built in conjunction with LG. The upcoming plant will finish construction in 2024 and begin mass production in 2025, alongside the release of Honda’s first electric vehicle, the Honda Prologue. The plant is set to employ 2,200 people once it reaches production readiness.
“We are excited to embark on this partnership with Honda, a leader in the global auto industry with a reputation for quality and reliability,” said Robert H. Lee, CEO of the Honda/LG joint venture. “If we harness these strengths, I have no doubt our joint venture will be the most successful battery plant in the world, and we look forward to being a part of this massive transformation toward sustainability.”
With a manufacturing capacity of 40GWh annually, Honda’s plant is undoubtedly one of the largest in the U.S., and it will likely prove vital as the Japanese automaker strives for 100% EVs and fuel cell vehicles by 2040.
Honda has not specified the battery cell type they plan to use in its upcoming vehicles. Still, due to the company’s work with GM on the vehicle design, it is likely similar to GM’s NMC pouch design, also produced in conjunction with LG.
As for producing those EVs, Honda specified that it would be spending $700 million on retooling and retrofitting its plants in Ohio as it preps for the first EVs to come off the production lines. Honda did not provide a timeline for the introduction of these manufacturing changes.