Pritzker: Lion Electric to bring first-ever US manufacturing plant to Illinois

State News

JOLIET, Ill. (WMBD) — Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker joined Lion Electric Company and elected officials to announce a new manufacturing facility coming to Joliet, IL.

As part of its agreement with the state, Lion has committed to an initial investment of at least $70 million over a three-year period to build a new facility dedicated to producing medium and heavy-duty electric vehicles (EVs) in the U.S. The facility is expected to begin production in the second half of 2022 with an annual production capacity of 20,000 zero-emission vehicles a year.

The company expects to create at least 745 jobs in the state.

“Lion’s historic investment to bring its largest production facility to Illinois represents not only a win for our communities, but a strong step forward in our work to expand clean energy alternatives and the jobs they bring to our communities,” Pritzker said. “The new Joliet facility will put Illinois at the forefront of a national movement to transition to zero-emission vehicle use, advancing our own goals of putting one million of these cars on the road by 2030. In Illinois, we know that a clean energy economy is about more than just vehicles – it’s about healthier communities and jobs for those who live there. We are excited to welcome Lion to the Land of Lincoln and look forward to their future success here.”

The 900,000-square-foot facility will be the company’s largest dedicated production site in the country.

The company is working with local officials to apply for more local incentives.

“Lion is the leader in electric school buses and has always been dedicated to the U.S. market, and our commitment to be close to our customers is one of the core values we have as a company,” said Marc Bedard, CEO and Founder of Lion. “This significant expansion into the U.S. market will not only allow us to drastically increase our overall manufacturing capacity of electric trucks and buses but to also better serve our customers, while adding critical clean manufacturing jobs that will form the backbone of the green economy. I also want to acknowledge the crucial role that P33 and Intersect Illinois, civic groups committed to developing a long-term roadmap for the local tech industry, played in connecting Lion with the Chicago area’s business and civic community to help further commercial traction, as well as engagement with key workforce and supplier partners.”

Lion Electric Company is a Canadian-based manufacturer of all-electric medium and heavy-duty urban vehicles. The company anticipates the first vehicles will roll off the production line in the second half of 2022.

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