Magna Launches Electric Drive Factory in China
Magna International Inc. has opened a factory in Shanghai to make integrated electric drive systems for Volkswagen AG vehicles built in China and Europe, Automotive News China reports.
The 710,000-sq-ft facility is operated through a joint venture it formed with Huayu Automotive Systems Co. Ltd. two years ago. Huayu is a subsidiary of Chinese carmaker SAIC Motor Corp.
The plant makes drives that combine an electric motor and gearbox with electronic power controls and related software. The factory has begun low-volume production and will begin supplying VW in the second half of next year.
Magna’s e-drives will be used in vehicles that ride on VW Group’s EV-specific MEB (modular electric toolkit) platform. By 2022, the chassis will carry electric models marketed by the company’s Audi, SEAT, Skoda and VW brands.
Chinese electric-car startup Nio Inc. is forming a manufacturing joint venture with Beijing E-Town International Investment and Development Co., which is investing 10 billion yuan ($1.5 billion) in the business.
Lithium-ion batteries have become the technology of choice for EVs, and falling costs and rising energy levels could keep them on top for nearly two decades.
Dan Nicholson is vice president of General Motors Global Propulsion Systems, the organization that had been “GM Powertrain” for 24 years.