Group Lotus and Britishvolt have signed a preliminary agreement to explore teaming up on battery manufacturing, research and development, according to people familiar with the matter.
The companies plan to share details of their memorandum of understanding next week, said the people, who asked not to be identified ahead of the announcement.
Representatives for Lotus and Britshvolt declined to comment.
The deal is the first official tie-up with an automaker for Britishvolt and an important step for the company, which is looking to cement its credibility with prospective investors.
The startup has done two rounds of fundraising and said last year it's considering a listing on the London Stock Exchange.
Britishvolt has started work on a 2.6 billion-pound ($3.5 billion) factory site in Blyth, England, that the company has said will eventually create about 3,000 jobs. At full capacity, the plant will produce enough battery cells for more than 300,000 electric vehicle battery packs a year.