Daimler announced a trial and development partnership with Israeli cleantech company UBQ Materials to explore the use of UBQ’s climate-positive material in the production of automobile parts. Daimler is also promoting the use of UBQ across its logistics manufacturers to offset carbon footprint throughout the Daimler supply chain. Daimler is... Read more →


Ford is investing €42 million (US$46.6 million) in its Valencia, Spain manufacturing plant to support the company’s electrification strategy with a state-of-the-art battery assembly facility in addition to new S-MAX Hybrid and Galaxy Hybrid models. Two new assembly lines will enable the advanced lithium-ion batteries that help power all-new Kuga... Read more →


FCA confirms discussions with Foxconn on China JV for electric vehicles

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V. (FCA) confirmed that it is in discussions with Hon Hai Precision Ind. Co., Ltd. (Foxconn) regarding the potential creation of an equal joint venture to develop and manufacture in China new generation battery electric vehicles and engage in the IoV (Internet of Vehicles) business. The proposed... Read more →


BMW i Ventures has invested in Alitheon, an optical AI software creator and deep-tech startup developing generative engineering software aimed at automating the product development process. All objects—even those that are indistinguishable to the human eye—have unique surface characteristics. Alitheon’s FeaturePrint technology uses off-the-shelf cameras and proprietary software to identify... Read more →


Rio Tinto has awarded Perth-based company Mondium a contract valued at approximately US$276 million (A$400 million) for the design and construction of the Western Turner Syncline Phase 2 (WTS2) mine in the Pilbara region of Western Australia. The WTS2 is part of Rio Tinto’s Greater Tom Price operations in the... Read more →


Two largest US automotive trade associations merge: Alliance for Automotive Innovation

Global Automakers and The Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers—the two largest automotive industry trade associations in the US—merged to form a new association leveraging the expansive history of both organizations while creating a single, unified industry voice. The new Alliance for Automotive Innovation, representing innovative manufacturers and value chain partners who... Read more →


BMW Group first automaker to join Initiative for Responsible Mining Assurance

BMW Group has become the first member of the Initiative for Responsible Mining Assurance (IRMA) in the automotive sector. IRMA is a precedent-setting global certification program for industrial-scale mine sites. With growing awareness and demand for ecologically and socially-responsible products, jewelers, electronics businesses, auto makers and others have sought assurances... Read more →


Tesla delivered 367,500 vehicles in 2019; up 50% from 2018 and within guidance

Tesla Motors reported record production in Q4 of approximately 112,000 vehicles. In 2019, Tesla delivered approximately 367,500 vehicles, 50% more than the previous year and in line with its full-year guidance. Tesla Q4 production and deliveries Production (vehicles) Deliveries (vehicles) Subject to lease accounting (%) Model S/X 17,933 19,450 14... Read more →


The light metal foundry of the BMW Group plant in Landshut has been certified for its sustainable use of aluminum. It meets the standards of the Aluminum Stewardship Initiative (ASI), an international organization that is supported by environmental and industrial associations, aluminum producers and manufacturing companies. ASI has defined sustainability... Read more →


Nuvera breaks ground on automated fuel cell production facility in China

Nuvera Fuel Cells, LLC, a provider of fuel cell power solutions for motive applications, is building a fuel cell stack production line in the Hangzhou district government of Fuyang, China. In December 2018, Nuvera signed a cooperation agreement with the Fuyang government, located in Zhejiang province, to enable the local... Read more →


UK-based engineering specialist Sheffield Forgemasters is leading a consortium of partners in a £10.5-million (US$14 million) project to explore the industrialization of Electron Beam Welding (EBW) in civil nuclear assemblies. The project has the potential to integrate welding into the manufacturing process, offering material improvements and vast reductions in manufacturing... Read more →


Northvolt launches recycling program targeting 50% recycled material in new Li-ion cells; “Revolt”

European Li-ion battery maker Northvolt has launched Revolt—a program devoted to recycling of lithium-ion batteries. As a first move towards securing a European ecosystem for lithium-ion battery recycling, Northvolt will establish a pilot recycling plant in Västerås, Sweden, adjacent to Northvolt Labs manufacturing plant. The pilot plant is anticipated to... Read more →


ArcelorMittal Europe announced a roadmap to reduce CO2 emissions by 30% by 2030. The target for ArcelorMittal Europe – Flat Products is in line with an ambition announced in May to be carbon neutral in Europe by 2050. The roadmap to achieve the 30% target is based on three distinct... Read more →


DOE to award up to $3M to advance process intensification and modular technology development

The US Department of Energy (DOE) announced up to $3 million for projects that address barriers to modular chemical process intensification to enable development of breakthrough technologies that can boost energy productivity and energy efficiency in industries such as oil and gas, pulp and paper, and chemical manufacturing. DOE’s Rapid... Read more →


In the future, the Mercedes-Benz plant in Untertürkheim will manufacture and assemble parts of electric powertrains (eATS). The eATS consists essentially of three subsystems: an electric motor, its power electronics and the transmission. The power-transmission wheelset and other components such as the electrohydraulic control system will also be manufactured in... Read more →


The Mercedes-Benz Dusseldorf plant has started production of the Mercedes-Benz eSprinter. (Earlier post.) Mercedes-Benz has been building its globally successful vans in Dusseldorf since 1962; more than 4.6 million vehicles have been produced in Dusseldorf to date. Since 2018, production of the newest Sprinter has also taken place there, with... Read more →


FCA joins Responsible Sourcing Blockchain Network to help build a more ethical EV supply chain

FCA has joined the Responsible Sourcing Blockchain Network (RSBN), an industry collaboration using blockchain technology to support sustainable, responsible sourcing and production practices from mine to market. Built on the IBM Blockchain Platform and assured by RCS Global Group, the RSBN is on track to become commercially operational by spring... Read more →


SK Innovation signs 6-year agreement with Glencore for up to 30K tonnes cobalt; batteries for 3M EVs

SK Innovation has signed a six-year agreement with Glencore for up to around 30,000 tonnes of cobalt contained in hydroxide between 2020 and 2025. Glencore projects approximately 30,000 tonnes of cobalt production per year through 2022 with its Katanga mine in Africa (DRC). SK Innovation said that by signing the... Read more →


GM, LG Chem to form JV, invest $2.3B to build new EV battery cell plant in Ohio

General Motors and LG Chem are partnering to mass-produce battery cells for future battery-electric vehicles. Together, the companies will invest up to a total of $2.3 billion through a new, equally-owned joint venture company. The JV will establish a battery cell assembly plant on a greenfield manufacturing site in the... Read more →


Mercedes-Benz Cars has opened a factory for plug-in hybrid (PHEV) batteries in the Bangkok region in Thailand. The new battery factory was built on a 50,000 m² site located at the vehicle manufacturing plant in the Bangkok region. The new plant is the third production facility in the company’s global... Read more →


BMW Group investing €400M in Plant Dingolfing for production of BMW iNEXT EV

The BMW Group is investing around €400 million in its Dingolfing vehicle plant for production of the BMW iNEXT. In doing this, it is preparing for the manufacture of pure battery-electric and highly automated BMW cars at its largest European production location. With the launch of the BMW iNEXT in... Read more →


Volkswagen Group says environmental impact per produced vehicle down 37% from 2010

The Volkswagen Group says that it is making faster progress towards sustainable and efficient production while also making good progress towards reducing its production costs. We are producing more environmentally friendly than ever. From 2010 to the end of 2019, the environmental impact per produced vehicle is expected to drop... Read more →


ArcelorMittal invests in new sustainability program across Europe; ResponsibleSteel site certification

ArcelorMittal plans to roll out a new sustainability program across Europe, aiming to secure ResponsibleSteel site certification for all its ArcelorMittal Europe - Flat Products sites. The 12-month program will enable each site to prove that the company’s production processes meet rigorously defined standards across a broad range of social,... Read more →


The BMW Group and Great Wall Motor have launched a new joint venture—Spotlight Automotive Limited—and are building a joint plant in China, where the BMW Group will produce future fully-electric models of its MINI brand. The plant will have a standard capacity of up to 160,000 vehicles per year, which... Read more →


Audi increases upfront expenditure for electric mobility; €12B by 2024

Audi AG plans an outlay of approximately €37 billion for research and development expenditure and investment in property, plant and equipment over the next five years (2020 to 2024). The current planning reflects a significant improvement in investment and cost discipline, as well as the strong prioritization of investments in... Read more →


Largest pilot plant for CO2-neutral production of hydrogen begins operation at voestalpine site in Linz

What is currently the world’s largest pilot plant for the CO2-neutral production of hydrogen has successfully commenced operation at the voestalpine site in Linz, simultaneously setting an international milestone in the advancement of new energy supply options. As part of the EU-funded H2FUTURE project, partners voestalpine, VERBUND, Siemens, Austrian Power... Read more →


Rio Tinto approves $749M investment in Pilbara iron ore mine; lower GHG, autonomous haulage

Rio Tinto has approved a $749-million (A$1-billion) investment in its existing Greater Tom Price operations (100% owned) to help sustain the production capacity of its world-class iron ore business in the Pilbara of Western Australia. The investment in the Western Turner Syncline Phase 2 (WTS2) mine will facilitate mining of... Read more →


BASF launches $10B Verbund project in China

BASF officially launched its smart Verbund project in Zhanjiang, Guangdong province, China, and commenced building its first plants. It marks a milestone of the company’s US$10-billion investment project announced in July 2018. (Earlier post.) The first plants will produce engineering plastics and thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) to serve the increasing needs... Read more →


BASF launches $10B Verbund project in China

BASF officially launched its smart Verbund project in Zhanjiang, Guangdong province, China, and commenced building its first plants. It marks a milestone of the company’s US$10-billion investment project announced in July 2018. (Earlier post.) The first plants will produce engineering plastics and thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) to serve the increasing needs... Read more →


Valmet Automotive has started the production of EV battery packs in its new plant in Salo, Finland. The battery plant project has progressed on schedule, and with the ramp up of production volumes, Valmet Automotive will continue recruiting more employees to the Salo plant. Valmet Automotive has completed the first... Read more →


General Motors and Isuzu announced a $175-million investment through their DMAX joint venture to build an all-new, diesel engine components plant in Brookville, Ohio. The new 251,000 square-foot facility would expand the production of critical engine components for the company’s current DMAX diesel engine manufacturing operation in Moraine, Ohio. 2017... Read more →


Volkswagen will assemble its ID.3 EV at the Gläserne Manufaktur in Dresden in addition to the Zwickau plant. The ID.3 is the first model in the latest generation that Volkswagen is putting on the road under its global electric offensive. Following on from Zwickau, Dresden now becomes the second assembly... Read more →


Volkswagen of America marked the start of construction for its electric vehicle production facility. The Chattanooga site, where EV production will begin in 2022, will be Volkswagen’s North American assembly base for electric vehicles based on the Modular Electric Drive Matrix (MEB). The company also announced it intends to build... Read more →


DOE awards $3.6M to High Performance Computing projects in manufacturing, materials and mobility

The US Department of Energy (DOE) is awarding $3.6 million to 12 projects under its High Performance Computing for Energy Innovation (HPC4EI) initiative. Selected projects will receive access to the National Laboratories’ high-performance computing (HPC) facilities and expertise to help address key challenges in US manufacturing, material, and mobility development.... Read more →


The new plant of The SAIC Volkswagen joint venture’s new plant—which is dedicated to production of all electric vehicles on Volkswagen’s Modular Electric Drive Matrix (MEB)—has been completed in Anting, Shanghai. Celebrating the start of pre-production, a first China-specific all-electric Volkswagen ID. model rolled off the production line. The start... Read more →


New EV OEM Lordstown Motors buys GM plant, licenses Workhorse IP

Lordstown Motors Corp. (LMC), a new original equipment manufacturer (OEM), has acquired the GM manufacturing complex in Lordstown, Ohio. The move paves the way for LMC to begin production of the Endurance all-electric pickup truck, purpose-built for fleets starting in late 2020. The LMC entity was created in connection with,... Read more →


DOE announces up to $4M for High Performance Computing for Energy Innovation

The US Department of Energy (DOE) announced up to $4 million for new projects to support manufacturers in improving energy efficiency, increasing productivity, and accelerating manufacturing innovation. The High Performance Computing for Energy Innovation (HPC4EI) Initiative, managed by DOE’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), is seeking qualified... Read more →


ABB opens new plant for battery systems for mobility applications in Baden

ABB officially opened a new plant for energy storage systems for mobility applications today in Baden, Switzerland. The energy storage systems will be used in railways, e-buses/trolleybuses and e-trucks. The facility represents an important investment in Switzerland as a production location. ABB has already received orders for energy storage systems... Read more →


ArcelorMittal entered into a licensing agreement of its Usibor part processing technology patent with AK Steel. This licensing agreement is a part of the settlement of a patent infringement case that has been pending in the Federal District Court for the District of Delaware between the two companies. The result... Read more →


Toshiba Digital & Consulting Corporation (TDX) and Spain’s Gestamp, a multinational specialized in the design, development and manufacture of highly engineered metal components for top vehicle manufacturers, are cooperating in a project to bring advanced monitoring and analysis to the welding of vehicle chassis parts. By drawing on know-how from... Read more →


Audi developing robotic process automation (RPA); as of 2020 also in combination with AI

Audi is now developing software robots (bots) to carry out monotonous tasks for employees at PC workstations. The digital robots can perform tasks such as entering data or creating standardized reports faster, more efficiently and without errors. The company wants to relieve its employees of such work so that they... Read more →


FCA to build battery assembly plant in Turin

FCA will build a new battery assembly complex in Turin as part of its overall e-mobility strategy. The new “Battery Hub” will be located in the Mirafiori complex and preparations will begin in early 2020. The initial investment will be approximately €50 million. This strategy has been at the center... Read more →


Umicore opens new facility for the production of fuel cell catalysts in Korea

Umicore inaugurated its new production facility for fuel cell catalysts in SongDo Incheon City (Seoul area), Korea, close to Umicore’s technology development center for catalysts. The facility will support the growth of Hyundai Motors Group as well as other automotive customers. Umicore expects to ramp up production in 2020 and... Read more →


Rio Tinto started the commissioning of industry-leading filter press technology at its Vaudreuil alumina refinery in Québec, Canada, six weeks ahead of plan and under its CAD $250-million budget. The new filter presses will deliver environmental benefits by moving the refinery to dry stacking of bauxite residue and extend the... Read more →


ArcelorMittal is adding to its family of advanced high strength steels (AHSS) for the auto industry with the development of Fortiform 980 Extragal (-GI) in North America. With the second generation of steels, body engineers had some limitations in using the higher strength grades for parts that play a role... Read more →


CATL starts construction of Li-ion factory in Germany; 14 GWh by 2022

China-based Li-ion battery maker Contemporary Amperex Technology Co. Limited (CATL) has begun construction of its first lithium-ion battery factory in Thuringia, a state in east-central Germany. CATL has developed partnerships with a number of European companies in the automobile industry including BMW, Volkswagen, Daimler, Volvo, and Bosch. Germany is home... Read more →


ORNL, University of Toledo to collaborate on advanced materials, manufacturing research for vehicle applications

The US Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory and The University of Toledo have entered into a memorandum of understanding for collaborative research into the advanced design and manufacturing of high-strength, intelligent, lightweight materials for use by the automotive sector. The partnership brings together the manufacturing, carbon fiber and... Read more →


Airbus and LM Industries create mobility startup Neorizon; digital manufacturing

Airbus and LM Industries, the the parent company of Local Motors and Launch Forth, have formed Neorizon to provide disruptive and innovative products with an initial focus on local mobility and autonomy. The Neorizon microfactory is intended to build products at unprecedented speeds through the combination of co-creation and cutting-edge... Read more →


Aerojet Rocketdyne teams with NASA to develop novel rocket engine technology; 3D printing

Aerojet Rocketdyne has entered into a Space Act Agreement with NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center to design and manufacture a lightweight rocket engine thrust chamber assembly using innovative additive manufacturing processes and materials. The goal of the project is to reduce manufacturing costs and make a thrust chamber that is... Read more →


Webasto, a global systems partner to the automotive industry, has started the production of batteries for electric vehicles in Germany. The manufacture of battery packs for a European bus maker has already commenced at the company’s Schierling site in the district of Regensburg. From the beginning of 2020 the company... Read more →