Suzuki to set up India’s first Lithium Ion battery unit with Toshiba & Denso

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Suzuki Motor will invest more than Rs 11.5 billion along with Japanese partners Toshiba and Denso to set up India’s first lithium ion battery facility in Gujarat. 

The announcement by the parent of the country’s largest carmaker, Maruti Suzuki is a major boost to the government’s ambitious vehicle electrification and Make in India initiatives. 

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According to media reports, Suzuki Motor chairman Osamu Suzuki also promised to invest Rs 38 billion more to expand capacity at its car manufacturing unit at Hansalpur near Ahmedabad, which is also the location for the factory that will make rechargeable batteries for electric and hybrid vehicles. 

This will take the Japanese automaker’s investments in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s home state to $2.1 billion. In the battery venture, Suzuki will hold half the stake, while Toshiba will own 40 percent and Denso the remaining 10 percent. Osamu Suzuki, who made the announcement coinciding with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s India visit, said the proposed joint venture would leverage India as a base for manufacturing batteries, which would be mounted on hybrid vehicles and sold in the local and export markets. 

Venturing into battery manufacturing is another move by Suzuki to prepare itself to meet increasing demand for green mobility. Suzuki in February forged an alliance with Toyota Motor that will enable both sides to explore possibility of cooperation in areas including alternate fuel technology, safety, IT and mutual supply of products and components. 

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