Germany to Take on Tesla With Gigafactory Rival
By Brian Parkin
August 4, 2017
German executives are preparing to announce a new home for a lithium-ion battery plant designed to rival the output at Tesla Inc.’s Gigafactory.
Terra E Holding GmbH will choose one of five candidate sites in Germany or a neighboring country next month to build its 34 gigawatt-hour battery factory, Frankfurt-based Chief Executive Officer Holger Gritzka said in an interview. The former ThyssenKrupp AG manager has helped to assemble a consortium of 17 German companies and won government support for the project, which will break ground in the fourth quarter of 2019 and reach full capacity in 2028, he said. The battery factory is the latest sign that German industry, the motor behind the world’s fourth-biggest economy, is gearing up for a new stage in the energy revolution. Lithium-ion batteries can help stabilize intermittent flows of wind and solar power on electricity networks. They’re also projected to power millions of plug-in cars expected to roll off German production lines beginning early next decade.