New Magna Plant In Michigan Will Manufacture GMC Hummer EV Battery Enclosures

Automotive supply company Magna International has broken ground on a new factory in St. Clair, Michigan, which will build battery enclosures for the upcoming GMC Hummer EV.

Named Magna Electric Vehicle Structures, the plant represents an investment of over $70 million. It will have an area of 345,000 square feet, and is expected to bring more than 300 jobs to the city of St. Clair in the next five years. Production is expected to begin in early 2022, at which time the factory will become Magna’s 25th manufacturing facility in the state of Michigan.

As such, Magna Electric Vehicle Structures will not be in a position to mass-produce battery enclosures for the first examples of the Hummer EV, which is scheduled to go on sale in Edition 1 form in the fall of 2021. However, production should be at full speed in time for the launch of the Hummer EV3X in the fall of 2022.

The purpose of a battery enclosure is to protect the vehicle’s battery (GM’s low-cobalt Ultium battery technology in the case of the Hummer EV) from damage and water ingress. It can also contribute to the structure of the vehicle’s frame. Magna is able to develop enclosures made of steel, aluminum or lightweight composites, according to the needs of the customer.

“Bringing this new battery enclosure technology to market is another example of Magna’s ability to deliver a full-system solution to automakers supporting their focus on a lower emissions future,” said John Farrell, President of Cosma International, Magna’s body and chassis group. “The move toward electrification allows us to rethink what is possible and demonstrate how we can leverage our core strengths to continue bringing customers innovative solutions that help them meet their goals, no matter how challenging.”

“This investment by Magna will create great jobs for our state’s talented workforce as we continue to implement our Michigan Back to Work plan to get Michiganders back on their feet,” said Governor Gretchen Whitmer. “This announcement reaffirms Michigan is transforming along with the automotive industry to ensure the next generation of mobility and electrification is designed, developed, tested, and built right here in our state.”

Magna International was founded in 1957 as Multimatic, a one-man tool-and-die shop in Toronto. Its first automotive industry contract was to produce metal-stamped sun visor brackets for General Motors in 1959. A 1969 merger with Magna Electronics Corporation led to the company taking on its current name in 1973.

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