Ford, SK and Koç Holding have signed a non-binding Memorandum of Understanding for a new, industry-leading joint venture business in Turkey. Following the signing of the non-binding memorandum of understanding, Ford, SK and Koç Holding will work toward finalising the joint venture later this year. This would lead to the creation of one of the largest commercial vehicle electric battery facilities in the European wider region.
The joint venture would be located on a site near Ankara and will manufacture high Nickel NMC cells for assembly into battery array modules. Production is intended to start as early as mid-decade with an annual capacity likely to be in the range of 30 to 45 Gigawatt hours.
Stuart Rowley, chair, Ford of Europe explained, “This proposed new battery joint venture is a prime example of how we are leveraging strategic partnerships to strengthen our business. It is also the first in a number of significant electrification and commercial vehicle announcements we will make this year as part of the ongoing redesign of our operations to create a leaner, stronger and sustainable all-electric Ford business in Europe.”
Dong Seob Jee, CEO, SK On Co added that, “Following the BlueOval SK cooperation in North America with Ford, we are delighted to be collaborating in Europe, and look forward to contributing to Ford's electrification growth strategy.”
Levent Çakıroglu, CEO, Koç Holding says the MoU is in line with the company’s sustainability goals, “Koç Group is closely following investment opportunities in the auto industry, and in advanced technologies and developments in electrification in line with our sustainability approach. We have a strong collaboration with our partner Ford spanning nearly a century. This strategic move is not only a testament to Turkey’s potential, but also bring our country a significant global competitive edge in battery production.”
Ford’s global battery electric plans call for at least 240 Gigawatt hours of battery cell capacity by 2030 – about 10 plants’ worth of capacity. Approximately 140 Gigawatts will be required in North America, with the balance dedicated to other key regions, including Europe and China.
Ford was Europe’s top-selling commercial vehicle brand for the seventh successive year in 2021, and best-selling brand in nine markets, including the United Kingdom where the Ford Transit Custom was ranked No 1 in the sales charts.