Ford is starting to develop its own batteries 

Blue Oval looks to gain foothold in future of EV market

Ford Ion Park

Talking points

  • Battery R&D facility will be built in automaker's home state of Michigan
  • Approximately 150 employees will work on next-gen battery tech
  • Part of Blue Oval's US$20 Billion investment in electric and autonomous vehicles

Ford is powering up its electric vehicle offensive for the future by creating its first battery research and development facility in Motor City – Detroit, Michigan. 

Described by the automaker as a ‘battery centre of excellence’, the new centre has been dubbed Ford Ion Park, and will employ roughly 150 dedicated team members. 

The 18,600 square metre establishment has not been designed for mass production, as there will only be two levels of manufacturing possible on-site – lab scale and pilot scale. 

The Blue Oval hopes the research and development (R&D) team will fast track the evolution of next-generation battery technology, which will be utilised in the majority of the brand’s automobiles in the future. 

Ion Park is just one facet of the automaker’s new strategy for developing electric vehicles and autonomous technology, with Ford claiming it will invest no less than US$20 billion on EV and autonomous products by 2025.

As reported by WhichCar, the automaker has also recently pledged that all of its products in Europe will be fully electric by 2030.

It’s thought the introduction of the in-house R&D facility is the American legacy brand’s response to recent technology supply chain issues that have plagued the automotive industry over the last 12 months. 

It’s also understood that Ford’s current EV battery supplier, South Korean manufacturer SK Innovation, recently lost a US$1.8 billion trade dispute with LG, and this may affect the automaker’s supply chain in the future. 

Ford isn’t the only American automaker investing heavily in battery tech either, with main competitors General Motors already dumping billions into battery and electric transport solutions. 

 

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