Advanced Propulsion Centre estimates UK BEV demand to top 100 GWh by 2035

News Analysis




Advanced Propulsion Centre estimates UK BEV demand to top 100 GWh by 2035

The Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC), a UK-based organisation that funds and supports organisations for green transport, has released its latest electric vehicle (EV) forecast report, estimating that UK BEV production will top 100 GWh by 2035. 

APC forecasts that the UK will lead the way to fully electric production in Europe, with 95% of vehicle production expected to be for battery electric vehicles (BEVs).

This figure is an impressive estimation of where the UK might be in just over 10 years’ time as the nation pivots towards net zero. The GWh EV production figures that inevitably drive this forecast will require an equivalent GWh of lithium-ion batteries, which presents an enormous opportunity to develop a domestic battery supply chain.

According to Project Blue data, the UK currently has a total gigafactory pipeline capacity of up to 90GWh, largely through efforts by Envision/Nissan and Tata. However, this figure assumes absolute project success, with gigafactories and expansions hitting targets in a timely manner. After many recent reports of project delays and cancellations in Europe, this figure is under threat of the planning issues that plague the outlook in the region. To meet this 90GWh figure, collaboration and coordination are required from all participants, from project owners to government and investment partners. By ensuring this, the UK would then be far better positioned to satisfy the majority of domestic EV demand from domestic lithium-ion battery supply. However, this is far from an easy task.

An added challenge is that gigafactories are just one part of the supply chain puzzle. Precursor, cathode/anode active material, separator, electrolyte and all the underlying raw materials are required to produce cells. This then poses an added layer of complexity to scaling EV production and gigafactories in the UK. On the one hand, it represents a great opportunity to welcome investment up and down the supply chain, but without adequate planning and strategy, it faces significant risk.