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Jaguar Land Rover New UK Gigafactory to be Built in Somerset

Jaguar Land Rover New UK Gigafactory to be Built in Somerset
20 July 2023

Tata Group, who owns Jaguar Land Rover, is to open a multibillion-pound electric car battery factory in Somerset.

This means UK-produced batteries will be available for Jaguar Land Rover production, as well as other manufacturers in the UK and Europe.

The Somerset site will be Tata Group’s first gigafactory outside India, and is predicted to create up to 4,000 new direct jobs, and thousands more in the wider supply chain. With a 40GWh ouput, the gigafactory will be one of the largest in Europe.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said in an official release: “With the global transition to zero emission vehicles well underway, this will help grow our economy by driving forward our lead in battery technology whilst creating as many as 4,000 jobs, and thousands more in the supply chain.

“We can be incredibly proud that Britain has been chosen as home to Tata Group’s first gigafactory outside India, securing our place as one of the most attractive places to build electric vehicles.”


European Growth in Gigafactories


Over the past three years, there has been a huge growth in the number of gigafactories being planned and announced, with Asia and China dominating the market. However, according to Benchmark Minerals, Europe has become the fastest-growing region for new electric vehicle lithium-ion battery capacity outside of China. 

Environmental impacts from electric vehicle production are usually down to battery production, and there remains a lack of economically and sustainably viable technologies for recycling most of the materials in lithium-ion batteries. However, research from Chalmers University of Technology in Sweden shows how scaling up production through gigafactories can cut this environmental impact significantly, compared to small-scale industrial production.

Their studies revealed how upscaling battery production from megawatt to the gigawatt level yields significant reductions in energy usage per kilowatt hour of battery-storage capacity produced – up to 58 per cent.

Picture: a photograph of two silver Land Rover Discovery electric vehicles being charged. Image Credit: Pixabay

Article written by Ella Tansley | Published 20 July 2023


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