Detroit Electric, a startup based in downtown Detroit, Michigan, will be teaming up with Chinese automotive giant Geely to develop a new range of electric cars and related electric drive systems, to be used primarily in China.
Geely is the current owner of Swedish automaker Volvo and has a number of its own brands operating in the Chinese market.
One of these, Emgrand, will be the first to sell electric cars developed by the new Geely-Detroit Electric alliance.
The first model will be an electric version of the Emgrand EC7, which will be launched in the first quarter of 2014. The vehicle will initially be sold to business and public-sector organizations, with sales for the first year forecast at 3,000 units, growing to 30,000 units in three years time. It should be noted that Detroit Electric announced a similar deal with Proton
more than four years ago, so those production figures may be just a little on the optimistic side.
For the latest deal, Geely will provide the rolling chassis and Detroit Electric its proprietary electric drive systems. Detroit Electric also plans its own range of electric cars and has already unveiled its first model, the SP:01
, which is billed as the world’s fastest production electric car. It has an output of 150 kilowatts (201 horsepower) and 166 pound-feet of torque, a 0-62 mph time of 3.7 seconds and a top speed of 155 mph.
The electric Emgrand EC7 won’t be quite as capable, but should still offer 0-62 mph acceleration of under 8.0 seconds, a top speed in excess of 124 mph and a driving range of about 100 miles.