Another sign that the sleeping Japanese giant is starting to stir: Toyota has signed a supply agreement with Korean battery-maker LG Energy Solution for lithium-ion batteries that Toyota will use in its US-built EVs starting in 2025.
LGES will invest $3 billion in its Holland, Michigan battery facility for dedicated production lines to supply a Toyota EV plant in Kentucky.
Under the agreement, LGES will supply Toyota with 20 GWh of high-nickel NCMA pouch-type battery cells and modules annually from the Michigan facility. How much battery capacity is that? EV expert John Voelcker notes that, assuming battery pack sizes of 60 to 100 kWh, the announced capacity is enough to equip 200,000 to 300,000 EVs per year. That translates to around 20% of Toyota’s North American vehicle production.
This is the latest in a tsunami of investment in new North American EV battery plants driven by the US Inflation Reduction Act—according to Benchmark Mineral Intelligence, there are at least 37 battery plants now operating or planned in the US and Canada. LGES is riding the wave—with the Toyota deal, the Korean firm will now be supplying batteries to 5 major automakers, including GM, Stellantis, Hyundai and Honda, from 8 jointly operated North American plants.