ZAP, Jonway team to produce electric SUV in China

ZAP and Zhejiang Jonway Automobile have entered into a commercial agreement to manufacture electric

ZAP and Jonway collaborated to produce an efficient, five-door Jonway A380 SUV, a mid-range electric vehicle (EV), integrating AC propulsion and lithium battery system technologies.

According to ZAP, the agreement with Jonway is part of a multi-phase business plan it is implementing to target Chinese electric vehicle market. Jonway markets and sells vehicles in China through a network of over 600 auto dealerships and has a capacity to produce up to 50,000 vehicles per year currently at its facilities in Taizhou.

Under the agreement, ZAP and Jonway take the electric drive systems designed by ZAP and integrate them into the reengineered SUV, which will be produced by Jonway. ZAP will perform R&D of core technology in Santa Rosa, California, and license the technology for this partnership. Both firms will jointly market and sell electric vehicles in China, North America and Europe.

In addition, ZAP hopes to leverage a stimulus from the government for plug-in forms of transportation. The Chinese State Council General Office intends to raise its annual production capacity to 500,000 all-electric cars, hybrids and buses by the end of 2011. To stimulate growth, China's Economic Construction Department has put in place a RMB 60,000 manufacturers subsidy per electric vehicle produced and sold in China.