Japan's GS Yuasa Corp said it plans to boost production capacity by 70 percent at its automotive lithium battery joint venture with Mitsubishi Corp and Mitsubishi Motors Corp to meet booming orders. They plan to spend around $260-$390 Million on new plant in Japan to boost capacity to equip 120,000 EVs a year by 2014 a GS Yuasa spokesman said.
Auto makers have slashed electric vehicle prices as the cost of producing batteries falls, increasing appetite for pure electric cars.
Lithium Energy, which is building another factory to begin operations in April next year, is hurrying to meet demand from carmakers in Japan and Europe for zero-emission vehicles.
The joint venture now makes car batteries at small factories in Shiga Prefecture and Kyoto and has an annual output capacity for about 18,000 vehicles, expected to hit 70,000 units in April.
GS Yuasa holds 51 percent of Lithium Energy, while Mitsubishi Corp has a 41.9 percent stake and MMC 7.1 percent.