D-Hub has reached an agreement with trade unions to create a working group with the aim of seeking ways to boost hiring in 2023 and 2024, thus ensuring the relocation of the former Nissan workforce in the shortest possible time.
The Hub is grateful for the support received from the Generalitat, Government, and trade unions, and values the commitment and collaboration of all three parties throughout the tender process.
“Today is a historic day for us and for Barcelona, but also for the automotive sector in Catalonia and Spain. Today a new nationwide project begins in Zona Franca, a project that is firmly committed to sustainable mobility. D-Hub will create employment locally, generate value for the industry and strive to act as a driving force for the industry. We have the challenge of writing a new future for the automotive sector and transforming mobility sustainably. And we build on a very solid base: we have the knowledge, the technology and the capacity, the market demand, as well as a staff with vast experience and relevant background,” says Joan Orús, CEO of QEV Technologies.
Rafael Ruiz, CEO of Btech, stated “For us, today is a milestone that marks the beginning of the industrial recovery in Zona Franca, focused on the new economy, in which we will work to accelerate the energy transition in the field of mobility. This project is also key to the recovery of jobs in the automotive industry.”
Hub Factory: two brands and more than 60,000 electric vehicles
D-Hub is committed to accelerating the pace to start production in Zona Franca in early 2024 and expects to reach 60,000 units by 2026. With the key handover, QEV Technologies, Btech and Goodman are now responsible for security, maintenance, and land management, and the three partners are finalising the last details for the landing. During this year, they will focus their efforts on the adaptation and fitting out of the factory.
The Hub Factory will start in 2024 with two key projects: the production of ZEROID, QEV Technologies’s trademark, a fleet of 100% electric vehicles, and the relaunch of the EBRO brand with the conversion of the Navara NV-200 pickup to electric by Btech.
QEV Technologies will centralise its production of zero-emission models at the Hub Factory, where it will manufacture three different models of electric vans, delivery trucks and electric and hydrogen platforms for buses and heavy trucks. The company will also maintain its facilities in Montmeló, which will continue to host its racing division. On the other hand, Btech is committed to relaunching the legendary EBRO.
QEV Technologies and its ZEROID brand will scale up production at the Hub Factory. The company has recently closed a deal with Grupo Bimbo, for Mexico, with an order for 1,500 electric vans. The vehicles, designed for the delivery of goods, are currently in production and will continue to be manufactured at the Hub Factory once it is fully operational. With this and other orders already placed, QEV Tech begins the process of reindustrialisation with an assured turnover of more than 100 million euros in 2023.
“The good market response to our ZEROID brand confirms the interest and the potential of the electric and cutting-edge models we are designing and producing at QEV Technologies. The agreements closed for the production of 100% electric vehicles that we bring to Zona Franca are just the tip of the iceberg of this electric mobility project, which has great capacity for growth in both the domestic and international markets,” adds Joan Orús.
Second phase: increasing production
In the second phase, and as an additional line of business, the Hub is studying combining the production of its own electric models with the implementation of a manufacturing line under licence (Contract Manufacturing). The aim is to multiply the volume of industrial production, generate more employment and business, while transforming Zona Franca into an ecosystem of innovation in electric mobility. Leading mobility companies have already expressed interest in engaging in this new service model, and D-Hub is currently in talks with several companies to consolidate this new business model.