Currently reading: Government-funded UK electric battery centre nears completion
UK Battery Industralisation Centre near Coventry will be open to all companies developing battery technology

The publicly funded UK Battery Industrialisation Centre (UKBIC) tasked with developing “cutting-edge” electric vehicle batteries is nearing completion, with most of its manufacturing equipment set to be commissioned by the end of the year. 

The 18,500sq ft Coventry facility serves as a precursor to a large-scale battery Gigafactory in Britain. It's part of a West Midlands Local Industrial Strategy designed to drive growth in the region and which includes a number of investments in future vehicle technologies.

The UKBIC can be accessed "by any organisation with existing or new battery technology if that technology will bring green jobs and prosperity to the UK". Companies will have the opportunity to prove their products - be they component parts or entire battery packs - can be manufactured on a commercially viable scale. 

The UKBIC was confirmed in 2017 as part of the UK government’s Faraday Battery Challenge and established as a partnership between Coventry City Council, Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership and the University of Warwick.

Last year, the government bolstered its initial £80 million investment in the factory with a further £28m injection, which is being used to develop battery-testing facilities and to train staff in battery production. 

Business minister Andrew Stephenson previously said that government investment in the UKBIC was part of plans to make the UK a world leader in zero-emissions vehicles.

“Putting the UK at the forefront of the design and manufacturing of zero-emissions vehicles is at the heart of our plans, creating jobs, growth and opportunity across the country,” said Stephenson. He added that the investment would “support the UK’s world-leading automotive industry to compete internationally, attract further investment and establish supply chains for new electric vehicle battery design and development.”

The West Midlands Local Industrial Strategy calls for the region to play a key role in driving investment in EV manufacturing and to play a leading role in UK trials of connected autonomous vehicles.

The strategy calls for the West Midlands to deploy the first fully operational connected autonomous vehicles ahead of the 2022 Commonwealth Games, which will be held in Birmingham.

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James Attwood

James Attwood, digital editor
Title: Acting magazine editor

James is Autocar's acting magazine editor. Having served in that role since June 2023, he is in charge of the day-to-day running of the world's oldest car magazine, and regularly interviews some of the biggest names in the industry to secure news and features, such as his world exclusive look into production of Volkswagen currywurst. Really.

Before first joining Autocar in 2017, James spent more than a decade in motorsport journalist, working on Autosport,, F1 Racing and Motorsport News, covering everything from club rallying to top-level international events. He also spent 18 months running Move Electric, Haymarket's e-mobility title, where he developed knowledge of the e-bike and e-scooter markets. 

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Old But not yet Dead 6 November 2020

Give it a chance

Come on Guys. It is not meant to be a Giga factory , its a research lab. Aiming for next gen technology. Its an idea well worth trying and gives university and small scale developers a chance to test ideas accessing brains and equipment and they could not afford alone.

Surely its worth supporting, instead of the typical glass half empty Brit approach.

Maybe in ten years it will be a Goldmine, maybe a white (or maybe green) elephant. Who knows , but you win nothing if you don't enter the race.

Andrew1 5 November 2020

Typically brexiteer

The Government has invested £100m, roughly peanuts, and claims it has a plan for the UK to be world leader.
I am sure that flies in the La La Uplands.
The Apprentice 17 May 2019

Saw the building going up

Saw the building going up yesterday, and to be fair it was a lot bigger than expected. Also near a lot of university talent, some of which are working on next generation battery technology. Its intended use being to test the viability of scaling up these new technologies into production with trail manufacturing lines. All good stuff.

Of course this being the UK, we will develop superb technology then utterly fail to capitalise on it with production and end up letting other countries benefit and end up buying our own technologies back as products.

jason_recliner 18 May 2019

The Apprentice wrote:

The Apprentice wrote:

... a lot of university talent...