BERLIN -- Daimler will produce its first in-house electric motor at its oldest plant in Berlin.
The motor weighs a fraction of its diesel equivalent and can boost the range of an EV by up to 7 percent. It is known as an axial flux motor and is designed by the British startup YASA that Daimler acquired earlier this year,
Investment in the Berlin-Marienfelde plant, previously pinned at a two-digit million euro amount, will rise to a low three-digit million euro amount in the next six years, Daimler said in a statement on Thursday.
YASA's founder Tim Woolmer told Reuters in July that Daimler had briefed YASA to bring costs down in future iterations of its motor so the carmaker could use them across its entire EV range.
The investment provides relief to workers worried that the Berlin site was on the brink of deep job cuts. Workers feared for their positions after Daimler said in 2020 that it would end production of the 6-cylinder diesel engine built there within a year.
The e-motor is simpler to produce than its diesel equivalent, meaning the plant will eventually require less workers -- but the exact number of future job losses was not yet clear, head of production Joerg Burzer said on a press call.
A start date for production of the motor was not provided.
The factory's 2,300 employees are guaranteed their positions until the beginning of 2030 under an existing union agreement.