Volvo early this month formally inaugurated a brand-new EV battery assembly line at its Belgian manufacturing plant in Ghent. That’s where it will start building the XC40 Recharge, its first pure electric car, later this year.
According to eletrek, the battery assembly line, which is longer than a football field, is located where an employee parking lot used to exist. The line will use nine stations to produce the XC40 EV’s 78-kilowatt-hour battery pack. The assembly will take place 24 hours a day over three work shifts.
Last year, Volvo Cars signed long-term supply agreements with China’s CATL and LG Chem of South Korea. The agreements cover the supply of battery cells over the coming decade for Volvo and Polestar models, including the XC40 Recharge. Volvo is engineering the packs and related software, and it will handle assembly of the cells into packs.
At the inauguration event, Volvo executives expressed confidence in its battery supply. Jonas Engstrom, Volvo vice president for vehicle line management, said: “We don’t have any issues. Everything is running according to plan”.
In January, Volvo reported “several thousands of firm orders” for the all-electric XC40 Recharge, soon after opening online ordering. US consumers can now reserve the XC40 with a $1,000 refundable deposit on the company website. The first customer deliveries of the XC40 Recharge are scheduled to begin later this year.