DETROIT — General Motors is making what it says is the largest-ever investment by an automaker in battery raw materials production as it prepares to further ramp up electric vehicle production in the coming years.
GM said Tuesday that it will take a $650 million equity position in Lithium Americas Corp. and work with the company to jointly develop Nevada's Thacker Pass lithium mine. Lithium Americas said GM will become its largest shareholder, with a nearly 10 percent stake.
Lithium Americas said the mine can produce enough lithium for as many as 1 million EVs annually. GM plans to use lithium carbonate from the Nevada project in its Ultium battery cells.
"It's a landmark transaction, and it certainly won't be the last major supply chain announcement for GM," GM CEO Mary Barra told analysts on the automaker's fourth-quarter earnings call. "We continue to pursue strategic supply agreements and partnerships to further secure our long-term needs and drive investment in the United States and across North America."