Volvo on Friday announced plans to construct a vehicle plant in Kosice, Slovakia.
The plant will be Volvo's third vehicle plant in Europe, joining the automaker's existing plants in Belgium and Sweden. This represents the first time in 60 years that Volvo has announced a new plant in Europe.
The plant, which will exclusively build electric vehicles, will be able to build up to 250,000 vehicles per year. The location also allows for further expansion in the future, should it be required. Together with the Belgian and Swedish plants, Volvo's capacity in Europe will grow to around 600,000 vehicles annually.
Volvo delivered approximately 700,000 vehicles in 2021 but has plans to grow this figure to 1.2 million by the middle of the decade. Other plants are found in the U.S. and China, which combined add annual capacity of around 800,000 vehicles.
Volvo will invest close to 1 billion euros (approximately $1.04 billion) in the new plant, with the government of Slovakia providing an additional 20% in funding. Around 3,300 direct jobs will be created.
If all goes to plan, construction will start in 2023 and the first vehicles will be rolling off the line in 2026. By 2030, Volvo plans for all of its plants worldwide to be exclusively building EVs.
No mention of what vehicle(s) will be built at the new plant. One possibility is a crossover smaller than the compact XC40, which former Volvo CEO Hakan Samuelsson hinted at last year.
“We have a clear focus on becoming a pure electric mobility brand by 2030, which is in line with our purpose,” Jim Rowan, Volvo's current CEO, said in a statement. “Expansion in Europe, our largest sales region, is crucial to our shift to electrification and continued growth.”