Build Your Dreams, better known as BYD, is the Chinese automaker that is going all-in with plug-in cars. Backed by Warren Buffett and already building its all-electric buses on American soil, BYD may have been born in China, but it has global ambitions. That includes rivaling the battery production of the much-vaunted Gigafactory with a battery business of its own.
Reuters reports that by the end of the year, BYD will already have about 10 GWh of battery production capacity, and by 2020 it expects to have about 34 GWh of production capacity, on par with the 35 GWh of production (about 500,000 vehicles worth of batteries) expected from the Tesla Gigafactory. BYD currently has about 6 GWh of capacity, and it expects to add another 6 GWh of capacity every year for the next five years. A new battery factory in Brazil will be a major boost to battery production, though BYD will likely keep much of its manufacturing base in China.
But BYD isn’t the only company rushing to add battery capacity. iPhone manufacturer Foxconn is investing hundreds of millions into a new battery factory, Apple is poaching battery engineers from A123 Systems, LG Chem was one of the top three battery makers in 2014, and Samsung just purchased Magna’s battery production division.
Tesla and its partner Panasonic have plenty of competition when it comes to battery production, and BYD may end up being its biggest rival, or the least of its worries.