GM and LG Energy Solution set to name Tennessee for second Ultium battery project in US

by Michael Green
Construction under way of the first Ultium Cells plant in the US, in Ohio. Photo: GM
Plans for General Motors and LG Energy Solution (LES) to build an electric vehicle battery manufacturing facility in the US state of Tennessee are expected to be unveiled in detail today.

World Battery News reported last month that GM and its Ultium Cells joint venture partner, LES, were in talks to build a second battery-cell manufacturing facility, as a sister plant to one under construction in Ohio.

The partners declined to comment on the potential location of the next plant.

However, GM has now confirmed that its chairman and CEO, Mary Barra, will join Tennessee governor Bill Lee and LES executives in Nashville later today – "to make a major US manufacturing-related announcement”.

Construction on the first Ultium Cells plant in Lordstown, Ohio, which will produce batteries for GM’s new-generation electric vehicles range, started last summer. The partners are investing $2.3bn (£1.7bn) in that project, which is scheduled for completion next year.

The battery cells use a proprietary chemistry featuring LG Chem’s NCMA (nickel-cobalt-manganese-aluminium) cathode, which requires 70% less cobalt than existing NCM (nickel-cobalt-manganese) cells.