For the second time in less than two weeks, an automaker with a major presence in Indiana is exploring the possibility of building an electric vehicle battery manufacturing plant, potentially in the Hoosier State. Japanese automaker Honda Motor Co. (NYSE: HMC) and South Korea-based LG Energy Solution said Monday they plan to invest $4.4 billion to build a battery production plant in the U.S. through a joint venture.
While the plant’s site is still undecided, the Associated Press is reporting Greensburg is being considered. Honda Manufacturing of Indiana produces CR-V, Civic and the Insight hybrid models at the plant in Greensburg.
The Wall Street Journal is reporting Marysville, Ohio is the leading candidate, which also has a Honda manufacturing plant.
“Honda is working toward our target to realize carbon neutrality for all products and corporate activities the company is involved in by 2050,” said Toshihiro Mibe, president and chief executive officer of Honda Motor Co. Ltd. “Aligned with our longstanding commitment to build products close to the customer, Honda is committed to the local procurement of EV batteries which is a critical component of EVs. This initiative in the U.S. with LGES, the leading global battery manufacturer, will be part of such a Honda approach.”
The companies said they plan to begin construction of the factory early next year and start mass production of lithium-ion battery packs by the end of 2025.
Inside INdiana Business did not immediately receive a response from state and local officials about the planned project.
This new project represents the second joint venture with LG Energy Solution announced this month that could impact Indiana. Ohio-based Ultium Cells, a JV between General Motors Co. (NYSE: GM) and LG Energy, is exploring the possibility of building a $2.4 billion battery plant in the St. Joseph County town of New Carlisle.
The St. Joseph County Council last week heard from the company on its request for tax abatement. The council is expected to take a final vote September 13 on the project that could generate 1,600 jobs for northern Indiana.
The Honda-LG joint venture is just the latest EV effort with Indiana ties. In June, global auto giant Stellantis (NYSE: STLA) and Samsung SDI announced a JV to invest more than $2.5 billion to build an electric vehicle battery facility in Kokomo and create 1,400 jobs.
During a trade mission last week to South Korea, Governor Eric Holcomb and Indiana Secretary of Commerce Brad Chambers met with top executives from Samsung SDI and toured its main EV battery production line.
“It was a great opportunity to highlight the alternate energy and EV battery ecosystems we are building in the state,” said Holcomb. “I’m confident that the relationships we created and deepened this week will lead to even more innovation, investment and a focus to develop better two-way trade between Indiana and South Korea.”
Construction of the Kokomo plant is scheduled to begin later this year with production expected to launch in the first quarter of 2025.
This story will be updated as more information becomes available.