Detroit Electric and Proton sign deal to build new electric vehicles

Detroit Electric’s first all-electric vehicle will go on sale in the U.S. next year, priced from $23,000

Detroit Electric’s first all-electric vehicle will go on sale in the U.S. next year, priced from $23,000

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Historic electric car brand Detroit Electric (DE) confirmed early last year plans to launch a range of all-electric vehicles for sale in Europe and North America by the end of the decade. The company has now taken a major step forward in realizing those goals with the announcement today that it has signed a deal with Malaysia’s Proton to start building the first cars from next year onwards.

Under the agreement, Detroit Electric will install its all-electric powertrain in two separate Proton vehicles which will then be sold under the Detroit Electric brand. The cars will be styled differently to the Proton vehicles on which they are based and are scheduled to go on sale in the U.S., Europe and China early next year.

By 2012, Detroit Electric plans to sell more than 270,000 electric vehicles and is implementing an aggressive pricing strategy for the cars. They are to be priced between $23,000 and $26,000 for the city range model (111mi/180km) and between $28,000 and $33,000 for the extended range model (200mi/320km).

For those unfamiliar with Detroit Electric, the group was an early 20th century electric car brand launched by the Anderson Electric Car Company over 100 years ago. In its heyday, Detroit Electric was an American icon and the cars were very popular with customers like Thomas Edison, Charles Proteus Steinmetz and Henry Ford’s wife Clara.

Detroit Electric is now seeking to form similar partnerships with manufacturers in the U.S. and Europe in effort to quickly expand the number of different models it sells. Proton is also reportedly developing its own hybrid technology, although nothing has been heard since last August.
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Comments (5)
  1. just want to add

    Detroit electric work with malaysia Proton to produce electric version of
    Proton Persona and proton savvy under the detroit electric badge..
    its cheaper than volt about 24k compared to volt 40k and the range is 320km compare to volt around 80km...and they plan to launch it late next year

  2. Yes, but the Volt van go much further once the batteries run out.
    You can't compare pure electric with a Hybrid of any type, especially until batteries can be charged as quickly as a car can be fueled (or close to it).

  3. A 200 mile range on a charge should more than be enough for your daily commute to work and the grocery store. I live in Arizona and have sun over 300 days a year and would wish more EV would have solar panels on the roof as Toyota is doing with the new Pruis.

  4. 200 miles is plenty, for a second vehicle.
    As long as you have another for the longer trips (or don't mind renting one, or flying and renting, all of which are viable options) then you can have an electric as your only car.
    The savings an electric provides (depending on driving patterns) could easily put enough money in your pocket to rent a car every now and then for longer excursions...

  5. gus.. thank god some one finally said it. i dont know how much long distance travel the rest of the world (or typical americans for that matter) do, but what the heck is wrong with flying or renting a car to do long trips? i mean, it will be a chance to validate your use of an electric car.

    Laz; its going to be a very very long time before solar panels are a significant source of energy for a car to run on. its more of a pipe dream than hydrogen. but it certainly does help. mostly, I feel, the solar panels on up coming cars are just a sales gimmick

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