electric/hybrid

Nissan announces EV36Zero £1 billion EV hub to accelerate the journey to carbon neutrality

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Nissan has today (1st July) announced a £1billion electric vehicle hub with long-standing partner Envision AESC to create a world-first EV manufacturing ecosystem.  
Nissan announces EV36Zero £1 billion EV hub to accelerate the journey to carbon neutrality
Courtesy of Nissan.

EV36 is centred around the Nissan plant in Sunderland UK where the new EV hub aims to supercharge Nissan’s drive to carbon neutrality, establishing a new 360-degree solution for zero-emission motoring. The transformational project has been launched with an initial £1 billion investment by Nissan and its partners Envision AESC, a global player in world-leading battery technology, and Sunderland City Council.

The new hub brings together electric vehicles, renewable energy and battery production, setting a blueprint for the future of the automotive industry.

“This project comes as part of Nissan's pioneering efforts to achieve carbon neutrality throughout the entire lifecycle of our products” said Nissan President and Chief Executive Officer, Makoto Uchida. “Our comprehensive approach includes not only the development and production of EVs, but also the use of on-board batteries as energy storage and their reuse for secondary purposes. Our announcement today comes out of lengthy discussions held within our teams, and will greatly accelerate our efforts in Europe to achieve carbon neutrality. The experience and know-how gained through the project announced today will be shared globally, enhancing Nissan's global competitiveness. Nissan will continue to leverage its strengths in electrification to become a company that continues to provide value to its customers and society.”

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson added that the announcement is a major vote of confidence in the UK and highly-skilled workers in the North East.

“Building on over 30 years of history in the area, this is a pivotal moment in our electric vehicle revolution and securing its future for decades to come” said Mr Johnson. “Commitments like these exemplify our ability to create hundreds of green jobs and boost British industry, whilst also allowing people to travel in an affordable and sustainable way so we can eliminate our contributions to climate change.”

Nissan's Chief Operating Officer, Ashwani Gupta, said that Nissan EV36Zero will transform the idea of what is possible for the industry and set a roadmap for the future for all.

“We reached a new frontier with the Nissan LEAF, the world's first mass-market all-electric vehicle” Mr Gupta said. “Now, with our partners, Nissan will pioneer the next phase of the automotive industry as we accelerate towards full electrification and carbon neutrality.”

Building on Nissan's historic 35 years of manufacturing excellence in Sunderland, the projects announced today represent 6,200 jobs at Nissan and its UK suppliers, including more than 900 new Nissan jobs and 750 new Envision AESC jobs at its new smart, low-carbon battery plant. Longer-term, the transformational project modernises and expands Nissan's EV production capability in the UK.

Envision AESC, the battery arm of global green tech company Envision Group, will deploy integrated AIoT smart technology to monitor and optimise energy consumption, manufacturing and maintenance at its new gigafactory, enabling it to rapidly increase production and provide batteries to power up to 100,000 Nissan electric vehicles a year.

As part of the £1 billion announcement, Nissan will invest up to £423 million to produce a new-generation all-electric vehicle in the UK. Building on Nissan's expertise in crossovers and the worldwide success of the Nissan LEAF, it promises next-generation vehicle styling, efficiency and battery technology, making the switch to electric driving even more accessible.

Designed for global markets, UK production will be exported to the European markets traditionally served by Nissan's Sunderland plant. The new crossover will be built on the Alliance CMF-EV platform, with a forecasted production capacity of up to 100,000 units to be installed.

Production in Sunderland will create 909 new jobs at the plant, and more than 4,500 in the UK supply chain, while safeguarding a further 75 R&D jobs. The transformational project takes the total capital investment by Nissan into the plant past £5 billion, and also includes:

R&D at Nissan's European Technical Centre in Cranfield, Bedfordshire

Support for UK suppliers to transition to electric vehicles

Plant competitiveness and environmental improvements

Skills development in the Nissan workforce for future technologies

Other production locations have not yet been confirmed. More details about the new vehicle, including pricing and technology, will be released closer to the car's sales launch.

Envision AESC already owns and operates Europe's first battery plant in Sunderland, established in 2012 for the localisation of Nissan LEAF battery production. The factory's UK team has nine years' expertise from supplying batteries to the Nissan LEAF and eNV200, having produced enough cells, modules and packs to power over 180,000 electric vehicles in 44 countries, meeting global benchmark levels of quality, performance, safety, reliability and cost.

Supporting this new model allocation, Envision AESC will invest £450 million to build the UK's first gigafactory on the International Advanced Manufacturing Park (IAMP), adjacent to the Nissan plant, powered by renewable energy and pioneering next-generation battery technology.

The formal planning process is about to begin for the new gigafactory, which represents an initial 9 GWh plant, with potential future-phase investment of £1.8 billion by Envision AESC, generating up to 25 GWh and creating 4,500 new high-value green jobs in the region by 2030, with potential on site for up to 35 GWh. The new plant will increase the cost-competitiveness of EV batteries produced in the UK, including through a new Gen5 battery cell with 30 percent more energy density which improves range and efficiency. This commitment will power Nissan's new vehicles, supporting the continued localisation of vehicle parts and components with advanced technology. This will make batteries cheaper and EVs more accessible to a growing number of customers in the future.

The new gigafactory will create 750 jobs and safeguard the jobs of 300 current employees.

Bringing this ecosystem together, Sunderland City Council is leading a project that aims to deliver a 100 percent renewable electricity 'Microgrid' that will save 55,000 tonnes of carbon annually.

With the ability to incorporate the existing Nissan wind and solar farms, initial plans suggest there could be as many as ten solar farms created, with an anticipated 132 MW generation, and with a direct connection to renewable energy from the UK grid for 'firm' supply to Nissan and automotive companies located on the adjacent International Advanced Manufacturing Park (IAMP).  Plans will continue to be developed in close discussion with potential private sector green investors.

A first-of-its-kind, this project is estimated to be an £80 million investment and also includes plans for a 1MW battery storage system using second-life Nissan/Envision AESC batteries, which will also allow for excess energy generated during daylight hours to be captured and used at another time, helping to balance demand on the grid. Additional infrastructure projects enabling the creation of the new EV Hub take the total initial investment above £1 billion.

Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC) CEO, Ian Constance, has said he is proud of the role the organisation has played in the investment in a major battery facility to support Nissan’s EV production expansion in Sunderland.

APC is a non-profit based at the University of Warwick that facilitates funding to UK-based research and development projects developing low-carbon emission powertrain technologies. It has been supporting investment in electrification through its role facilitating the UK Government’s Automotive Transformation Fund (ATF), which builds on the significant research and development base supported through the APC since its foundation in 2013.

Ian Constance, APC CEO, said that the announcement cements Nissan’s long-standing commitment to the UK automotive sector sends a strong signal that the UK is globally competitive and offers the right conditions for manufacturers wanting to accelerate the electric vehicle transition to net-zero – an important message if we are to meet the forecast 90 GWh of UK battery demand by 2030.  

“It’s great news for Sunderland and those involved in Nissan manufacturing but it also recognises that our entire UK ecosystem can sustain the significant pipeline of automotive demand for low-carbon technology” said Mr Constance. “The APC has provided funding to a number of projects involving Nissan, developing EV technology that is on our roads today and I am proud to work for an organisation that champions the UK’s globally recognised expertise and capability in clean automotive innovation.” 

For additional information:

Nissan

Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC)

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