Mercedes signs 1.5 billion euro deal to push e-car drive

by SpeedLux
Mercedes-Benz EQV Electric Minivan Concept at 2019 Geneva Motor Show

Mercedes-Benz has signed a supply agreement with Rock Tech Lithium Inc to receive on average 10,000 tons of battery-grade lithium hydroxide annually, the German automaker said on Thursday.

The deal permits the luxury automaker to supply its battery partners with raw material, beginning in 2026, including a qualification period, in order to rapidly scale up production of electric vehicles, the company said.

The deal, which comes just after the two groups said they would look for a strategic partnership, has a volume of 1.5 billion euros ($1.46 billion) and will cover enough lithium hydroxide for 150,000 cars a year.

“This significant amount of lithium sourced directly from Rock Tech will help Mercedes Benz to advance localization of European production of state of the art battery cells,” said Markus Schaefer, the Mercedes-Benz management board member.

As part of the deal, Rock Tech Lithium plans to provide Mercedes-Benz battery partners from a converter based in Guben, Germany, helping the automaker to go fully electric by the end of the decade where market conditions enable.

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