Volvo Group announced on July 18 that it has entered into a strategic partnership with Samsung SDI Co. to develop battery packs for the group’s electric trucks. Under the agreement, Samsung SDI will supply battery cells and modules customized for electric trucks to Volvo, which will develop an electric truck platform using Samsung SDI’s pack technology.
“The alliance with Samsung SDI is an important next step on our journey towards offering the world’s most truly sustainable transport system with fossil-free alternatives,” said Volvo Group President and CEO Martin Lundstedt.
Samsung SDI CEO Jun Young-hyun said, “We are convinced that this alliance will provide superior offerings pertaining to energy, safety and sustainability to the commercial vehicle industry and beyond. We are confident that this alliance will secure the market leadership of both companies in the long term.”
Samsung SDI is already providing electric vehicle (EV) batteries to global leading automakers, such as Volvo, BMW, Audi, Volkswagen, Jaguar and Fiat Chrysler. Recently, it provided batteries for electric motorcycles to Harley-Davidson. The company has succeeded in expanding its business areas to various electric means of transportation ranging from electric vehicles to electric motorcycles.
As Samsung SDI has secured a global commercial vehicle producer as its client, the company’s portfolio of EV batteries has become more diverse now. Volvo is competing with Scania, MAN Truck and Iveco for the leadership in the global commercial vehicle market.
Samsung SDI started volume production of EV batteries in its Ulsan plant in 2013. It completed its EV battery plants in Xian, China, in 2015 and Hungary in 2017. Currently, it manufactures a total of 140,000 units, including 60,000 in Ulsan, 50,000 in Hungary and 30,000 in Xian, China.
Samsung SDI is planning to invest aggressively and steadily to expand its EV battery production capacity to respond to the rapidly growing market. The company invested a total of 1.80 trillion won (US$1.53 billion) in facilities, including battery plants, last year and it is making an investment that surpasses the market growth rate this year.