The battery cell "is tomorrow's combustion chamber," Porsche CEO Oliver Blume declared at parent Volkswagen Group's recent Power Day.
The VW event, which came not long after Tesla's Battery Day in September 2020, marked the first of a series of announcements from European automakers that laid out their plans to replace internal combustion engines with battery-driven propulsion.
They included: VW's Power Day in March; Renault's eWays ElectroPop event in June; Stellantis' EV Day in July; and Daimler's EV strategy announcement in July.
The automakers used the events to expand on how they were going meet the 468 gigawatt-hours of battery cell capacity IHS Markit estimates is needed in Europe to meet the EU's proposed 55 percent CO2 reduction target by 2030.
The promise of new gigafactories, mostly with cell partners, was the concrete results of 2.9 billion euros ($3.5 billion) of investments from European Union countries promised under the European Battery Innovation Project, which aimed to create 18,000 new jobs and help replace those lost in the shift away from internal combustion engines.
The online events went beyond investment announcements.
Europe's automakers also laid out in a series of PowerPoint slides with varying degrees of detail outlining how they would offer different battery chemistries and unify battery pack design to balance customer demands for increased range and lower cost.
At the same time, executives such as Porsche's Blume introduced the idea that, far from being just a commodity, battery cells are as much a differentiator for automakers as the combustion engine ever was.