Mahindra considering investment in EV battery cell maker to secure supplies
Home-grown automaker Mahindra is looking to invest in an EV battery cell maker so as to meet the company's future electrification requirements as the company recently raised funds for its new electric vehicle (EV) unit at a $9.1 billion valuation. The automaker raised $250 million from British International Investment for the unit, and is also looking at forging partnerships with Volkswagen to source EV components.
Though a partnership with Volkswagen will help the automaker meet its "short to medium term" battery needs, Mahindra CEO Anish Shah told Reuters that the company was open to looking at some sort of "investment with a global leader" in the battery-cell space in order to secure future supplies. “Our intent is not to get into (manufacturing) batteries. There are people who do it very well. We can partner with them," he said.
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As for Mahindra's electrification goals, the company plans to launch five electric sport-utility vehicles over the next few years, with an aim for these models contributing up to 30%, or about 200,000 units, of its total annual SUV sales by March 2027.
With a growing demand for battery-powered vehicles and a shortage of auto components across thee globe, automakers are looking at ways of having greater control over supplies and costs. Some are even spending billions of dollars on mines and factories for motors and batteries.
Shah said that, except for batteries and motors, most of components for EVs were not very different from those of combustion-engine cars and Mahindra produced a majority of those parts in-house. "If we can get an agreement like we have with Volkswagen to secure (battery) supplies, that's what we will do. If there's some investment we need to make to secure those supplies, we will do that," Shah said.