Lion Electric opens EV battery plant in Mirabel

by Inside Logistics Online Staff

Lion Electric has opened its new manufacturing factory that will produce lithium-ion batteries for medium and heavy-duty vehicles in Mirabel, Quebec.

The first of its kind in Canada, this recently built 175,000-square-foot facility located at the YMX International Aerocity, will power electric vehicles assembled by Lion at its Saint-Jérôme, Quebec, and Joliet, Illinois, manufacturing plants.

Following the installation of the initial portion of the battery assembly line in Mirabel, production of the first battery pack was completed at the end of 2022. Final certification of the first battery pack model is expected in the first half of 2023, followed by a gradual production ramp-up in 2023.

“I am incredibly proud that we have reached this significant milestone in Lion Electric’s journey,” said Marc Bédard, CEO and founder of Lion Electric.

“This official opening celebrates the culmination of several years of efforts that now allow us to control the manufacturing and integration of one of the fundamental components in the production of electric vehicles and the electrification of transportation – namely the battery.  With this new facility, Lion will be able to strengthen its leadership role in the electrification of the transportation ecosystem in Canada and the United States. We look forward to continuing our innovation efforts.”

The first Lion batteries will serve to power the LionC and LionD school buses and the Lion5 trucks.

The company designs and manufactures all-electric class 5 to class 8 commercial urban trucks and all-electric buses and minibuses.

The new facility is targeted to reach a production capacity of 1.7 gigawatt hour by the end of the year. At full scale,  it should have an annual production capacity of five gigawatt hours. This would enable Lion to electrify approximately 14,000 medium and heavy-duty vehicles per year, depending on the vehicle mix.

To date, Lion has delivered more than 950 all-electric medium- and heavy-duty vehicles in North America, that have collectively driven more than 16 million kilometres. All of Lion’s vehicles are purpose-built for electric propulsion and are manufactured at Lion’s North American facilities.

Once the Quebec and Illinois factories are at full capacity, Lion expects to be able to manufacture 22,500 electric buses and trucks per year.