Autocar confidential: Morgan’s factory expansion plans, BMW’s hydrogen doubts and more

In this week’s report from the motoring grapevine, we hear why BMW isn’t prioritising hydrogen technology development, how Morgan will use some of the funds from its recent cash injection and more.

No solid plans

Solid-state battery technology remains several years away from production reality, according to new Mercedes-Benz CEO Ola Källenius. Speaking to Autocar, he claimed that none of the suppliers developing it “are currently at the stage where we can go out and say ‘please sell me these’”. Källenius reckons we won’t see a solid-state production EV before 2025. 

Citi limits

The Skoda e-Citigo, launching this year as the Czech firm’s first electric model, will feature a range of around 186 miles. That will make the city car, based on the Volkswagen e-Up, “more than competitive in its class”, according to Skoda boss Bernhard Maier. 

New plot for old plot

Morgan has built on only half of the 10-acre site where its Malvern factory is located. This means there’s plenty of room for the new museum, visitor centre, design studio and production increase (from 750 to 1500 units) it has proposed. The plans have received council backing. 

Not cooking on gas

While Audi is ramping up its hydrogen programme, BMW’s product management boss Peter Henrich doesn’t see fuel cells “lifting off in the near future”, pointing out that infrastructure challenges with hydrogen remain. Any success fuel cells have is “very much dependent” on the speed of battery development, he added.