Tesla wants to build battery factory in Europe

Author: Ralf Schmitt
Date: 02.08.2018

Germany as favorite location

Tesla boss Elon Musk wants to build a new battery factory in Europe. He considers the border of France near the Benelux countries (Belgium, Netherlands and Luxembourg). However, his favorite should be Germany. Musk announced at a Tesla Annual General Meeting in early June to select a location for the European battery factory by the end of 2018. Already in 2017 he wanted to build a factory in Europe.

In total, Musk wants to build ten to twelve factories worldwide. The model for this is the Gigafactory 1 in the US state of Nevada, which is built together with the Japanese electronics group Panasonic. The factory shall be operating from 2020. But even during construction, the factory produces batteries with a total storage capacity of 35 gigawatt hours at maximum capacity. That’s a doubling of current worldwide battery production.

Tesla already represented in Germany

The electric car manufacturer already has a small production site in Prüm, due to the takeover of the resident supplier Grohmann Engineering in early 2017. There, the production system for the Tesla Model 3 was developed and currently assembly machines for the production of battery cells and battery modules are being built. Furthermore, Tesla works together with several German suppliers. Important components come from Bosch, Brose, ZF, Continental as well as Elektrobit and even from Daimler.

Gigafactory 1 will build engines and transmissions in the future

In addition to batteries, the Gigafactory 1 will also be used to produce electric motors and gearbox components. Gearboxes are usually not needed by e-cars, but can significantly increase efficiency. Therefore Tesla invests 350 million US dollars and creates 550 new jobs.

Currently, the Gigafactory is only 30 percent ready. The factory building currently has over 175,000 square meters and will be over 455,000 square meters on several levels. This also includes a recycling factory for old batteries.

When the Gigafactory is completed, its area will be around 530,000 square meters, and so it will be the largest production worldwide. On the roof of the factory, a 70-megawatt solar system will be installed, which should reduce the energy balance to zero. Once completed, this system will also be part of the largest roof solar system in the world. A total of 6,500 employees are hired at the factory and up to 30,000 new jobs are created in the environment by suppliers and other service providers.