Hyundai has been in advanced discussions with state officials to build a dedicated EV facility in Georgia, three people with direct knowledge of the talks told Reuters. The investment details, including its projected cost and the number of jobs it would be expected to create, were not immediately known.
The new Georgia EV facility, if it is finalized, would serve both Hyundai and Kia as the brands move to roll out two full electric crossovers – the Ioniq 7 and EV9 – aimed at the U.S. market, the three people with knowledge of the plans told Reuters.
Representatives of Georgia's economic development authorities could not be immediately reached for comment.
The announcement of an investment deal by Hyundai would come at a time when the Biden administration has been pushing for more investment in EVs and related suppliers to create jobs and drive a clean-energy agenda. It would also mark a major economic development win for Georgia, which has pushed to establish itself as a regional hub for the emerging EV industry.
Hyundai had been working to announce its U.S. investment in EV manufacturing sometime later this month to coincide with Biden's planned visit to Seoul, another person with knowledge of the plans said.
Hyundai announced a $300-million investment last month to manufacture the all-electric Genesis GV 70 and a hybrid version of the Santa Fe at its Alabama plant. The Genesis model would be Hyundai's first EV made in the U.S.
Hyundai affiliate Kia also said last month it was looking to shift production to the U.S. but was not considering a dedicated EV factory on its own.
Kia has said it will have 14 EVs by 2027. Hyundai has said it will roll out 17 by 2030, including six for its Genesis luxury brand.
Hyundai's battery supplier, SK Innovation's battery unit SK, has just built two adjacent plants in Georgia. The first, mostly supplying the Volkswagen Group, kicked off production in the first quarter. The second, which will supply batteries for Ford Motor Co., is set to begin production early next year.
SK will supply the battery for the Ioniq 7, a person with knowledge of that contract told Reuters. SK said it cannot comment on supply deals involving specific customers.