High-end carmaker BMW said it will combine its battery cell know-how with a new development centre and will invest 200 million euros (A$311 million) in the site over the next four years.

“By producing battery-cell prototypes, we can analyse and fully understand the cell’s value-creation processes. With this build-to-print expertise, we can enable potential suppliers to produce cells to our specifications,” said BMW board member Oliver Zipse.

“The knowledge we gain is very important to us, regardless of whether we produce the battery cells ourselves, or not.” The centre will open in early 2019, BMW said.