Vietnam-based automaker VinFast was initially unveiled in October this year, talking about the battery plant. With a capacity of 5-gigawatt hours (GWh) per year, the plant was planned to be built at Ha Tinh, Vietnam. VinFast is part of Vietnam’s biggest conglomerate Vingroup. It became the country’s first automaker to build fully-fledged vehicles within the country. Now, Vinfast has already started manufacturing the battery plant.
It is betting on the U.S. market, where its electric SUVs and a battery leasing model are expected to make their debut next year. The battery plant, Vietnam’s first EV battery project is located in the central province of Ha Tinh, on an 8-hectare (20 acres) plot. In October, the Ha Tinh local authorities said the plant was expected to be a $387 million investment and on a 12.6-hectare plot.
“This is in the focus of VinFast’s localization strategy of supply,” said Thai Thi Thanh Hai, vice-chair of Vingroup and vice-chair of the board of VinFast.”The strategy enables us to own our supply chain of batteries and parts.”
The company said it is looking to produce 100,000 battery packs per year in the first phase and then upgrade its capacity to one million. It did not elaborate on the project’s time frame in detail. But based on the news in October, the project would run at full capacity from 2025.
VinFast is working with a variety of partners for batteries, including StoreDot, Gotion High-Tech, and ProLogium, and is also focusing on internal R&D and is establishing research facilities to develop battery and charging technologies, the company has previously said in an emailed statement to Reuters. Last week, Vingroup said it was looking to list in the United States in the second half of next year.