Britishvolt and Prologis to create £200m electric car battery plant

West Midlands development will service Gigaplant in northern England

Battery manufacturer Britishvolt announces a partnership with Prologis four months after revealing plans for £200 million facility in the north of England. Photo: Britishvolt
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Battery manufacturer Britishvolt has teamed up with Prologis to create a £200 million car battery plant in the West Midlands.

The facility will complement Britishvolt’s Gigaplant at Blyth in Northumberland and enable it to produce more batteries.

Britishvolt believes the Hams Hall site near Birmingham will become a centre of excellence for electrification, with major car makers close by the facility.

The Blyth Gigaplant, which will be operational by the end of 2023, will eventually produce cells for more than 300,000 electric vehicles a year, Britishvolt said.

The announcement came amid news that the UK’s leading auto manufacturer, Jaguar Land Rover, is in talks with overseas firms Northvolt and SVolt Energy Technology about supplying batteries for a range of electric vehicles it may assemble in Slovakia.

Industry leaders have told the UK government it must invest heavily in car battery technology.

Paul Franklin, property director at Britishvolt, said he believed the Hams Hall plant will help to establish the UK as a centre of excellence.

“This is another important milestone for Britishvolt and its world class automotive industry,” he said.

“The UK’s battery ecosystem is a global leader in integrated technology development and industrialisation with the Warwick Manufacturing Group, Faraday Institution, UK Battery Industrialisation Centre and the Advanced Propulsion Centre.

“I am delighted to see Britishvolt lead the UK’s journey into re-industrialisation with the first full-scale battery Gigaplant.

“The new scale-up facilities announced today will help the UK to build on its home-grown battery intellectual property and level up the country, ready for the energy transition.”

The West Midlands has been referred to as a golden triangle of international battery production, with the WMG, Advanced Propulsion Centre, and UK Battery Industrialisation Centre located there.

“Partnering with Britishvolt has been a pleasure,” said Tom Price, capital leasing and deployment director at Prologis UK.

“The reputation of Hams Hall and the location’s connections to the UK automotive sector have allowed us to embark on a wider conversation with Britishvolt. With battery technology seen as the way forward, it’s exciting to be working in this growing sector,” he said.

“Prologis is committed to embedding sustainability into every aspect of our business. When looking at 'last-mile' logistics, that is the final delivery of goods to people’s homes, it’s clear that the work Britishvolt are embarking on will contribute to reducing emissions in supply chains.”

Britishvolt has a preliminary partnership with Aston Martin, which has scheduled the launch of its first fully electric model for 2025, and Lotus.

The company has developed pre-'A' battery samples at WMG in Warwick and is scaling up its 'A'-sample cell formulations at the UK Battery Industrialisation Centre in Coventry.

It is hoped the new facility will enable it to develop formats and formulations to make both higher performance and more affordable cells for the new generations of electric cars and commercial vehicles.

Updated: May 31, 2022, 3:17 AM