MG raises local EV battery capacity for plug-in hybrids
Thai-Chinese joint venture SAIC Motor-CP continues to bolster the MG brand's foothold in the Thai electric vehicle (EV) industry with a plan to invest in battery production for plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEV) to serve growing demand in the market.
The company will increase battery production capacity to 700-800 units per month, up from 300-400 units under the PHEV Battery Shop project to be carried out at its car manufacturing plant in Chon Buri.
The company did not elaborate with regard to investment details.
"MG is in the process of revising a business plan following the pandemic's impact on business, so we simply forgot about the investment budget for the PHEV battery project," said Zhang Haibo, president of SAIC Motor-CP and MG Sales Thailand.
Mr Haibo said the company is determined to increase the battery production capacity because PHEV sales in Thailand are constantly increasing.
MG has launched marketing campaigns to promote PHEVs, awakening prospective car buyers to the new technology for cars.
The company launched the MG HS PHEV model in Thailand late last year, the third country after China and Britain. MG produces PHEVs in Thailand.
The company is also preparing to produce more EVs in Thailand after it was granted tax privileges for production from the Board of Investment (BoI) a few years ago.
The production is part of the company's plan to serve the growing EV market in the country by increasing the number of EV charging outlets to 500 within this year under a 500-million-baht budget, said Mr Haibo.
Earlier, MG set a target to install 100 charging outlets nationwide last year.
The EV charging facility development will be carried out in two phases. MG will first set up facilities at MG showrooms to serve customers, and then expand to other venues like office buildings and shopping malls.
"The company will continue to raise investment in Thailand and focus on EVs, which are becoming a global trend," said Mr Haibo.
MG expects the Thai automotive industry will slowly recover from the pandemic, hoping stimulus measures will bolster business confidence and increase people's purchasing power.