Mercedes-Benz has begun of a new battery factory, located near the vehicle production site in Tuscaloosa, to provide batteries for future electric SUVs under the product and technology brand EQ.
The new production site for batteries—along with the new Consolidation Center—is located seven miles from the Mercedes-Benz Cars vehicle production site in Tuscaloosa. The Consolidation Center, also announced as part of the 2017 investment announcement, will consist of three major areas, including the body parts preparation area, the assembly parts preparation area and the empties storage. It is expected to be operational in 2019.
The new battery facility near the Tuscaloosa plant is part of a global battery production network of in total eight factories in Kamenz, (Germany), Stuttgart-Untertürkheim (Germany), Sindelfingen (Germany), Beijing (China), Bangkok (Thailand) and Tuscaloosa (USA).
The worldwide network of battery factories allows Mercedes-Benz to react flexibly and efficiently to market demands and requirements. The different sites supply local vehicle production and are ready to export batteries, if required.
Mercedes-Benz Cars will offer at least one electrified vehicle in each model series by 2022 totaling up to more than 130 models. Mercedes-Benz is about to start the production of electric passenger cars as part of its worldwide electric initiative. This includes the production of an all-electric SUV in the US.
Mercedes-Benz has already invested more than $6 billion invested in the Tuscaloosa plant since 1995. The additional $1 billion will help Mercedes-Benz Cars expand its industrial footprint in the region, most of which is slated for the electric initiative. It is expected that, once completed, these investments will create more than 600 additional jobs in Alabama.
Tuscaloosa has served as the traditional production site for SUVs since 1997. This factory supplies the current GLE, GLE Coupé and GLS models to customers worldwide. These models are made exclusively in Alabama and two thirds of them are exported to almost every country in the world.