Mercedes-Benz, Volkswagen Make Batteries in Canada

Mercedes-Benz and Volkswagen both stated they signed an MoU with the Canadian government on battery materials and technology. Both German companies want to boost Canada's electric vehicle supply chain and ensure sustainable raw materials.

Outgoing VW Group CEO Herbert Deiss, Mercedes-Benz Group CTO Marking Schaefer, German Federal Chancellor Olaf Scholz, Canada's Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry François-Philippe Champagne, and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau attend.

Volkswagen Group focuses on PowerCo, its new battery subsidiary, and Canadian mining. This cooperation is focused on supplying lithium, nickel, and cobalt. The goal is to boost the Group's cathode material output and allow Canadian suppliers to operate as raw material suppliers, refiners, and processors. PowerCo intends a Canada liaison office.

"The supply of battery raw materials and manufacture of precursor and cathode materials with a low carbon footprint will allow for a fast and sustainable ramp-up of battery capacity," said Deiss, who will stand down as VW Group's CEO at the end of the month.

VW wants to deploy more than 25 EVs in North America and reach 55% EV sales by 2030.

Mercedes-MoU Benz's seeks to deepen relationships across the automotive value chain, from technical development and raw material extraction to production, service life, and recycling.

Mercedes is also exploring a strategic relationship with Rock Tech Lithium Inc. This alliance can tap new raw material sources, allowing Mercedes-Benz mass-produce zero-emission vehicles.

"Sustainability is a core pillar of our Mercedes-Benz purchasing strategy, thus we appreciate that Rock Tech plans to supply Mercedes-Benz with lithium from IRMA-audited mines and renewable energy sources," said Gunnar Guethenke, Vice President Procurement and Supplier Quality of Mercedes-Benz AG.