Chery to offer wide array of new energy vehicles
Chery Automobile Co. has moved quickly to roll out its new energy cars.
Enticed by a government incentive program, Chery Automobile Co. has moved quickly to roll out its new energy cars.
Its first pure electric car rolled off the assembly line last week in its Wuhu plant. A full charge, which takes four to six hours, can power the car for 120 to 150 kilometers with a maximum speed of 120 kilometers per hour.
The electric car is based on Chery's S18 small car platform.
At the 2008 Beijing Auto Show, Chery unveiled five small cars built on the S18 platform. But none of them has been put into production.
The electric car was independently developed by Chery and the lithium ion batteries used in the car were supplied by a Chinese battery maker, says Frank Liao, chief engineer of Chery's automobile engineering research institute.
Liao declines to name the battery maker.
Details on the pricing of the electric car and when it will hit the market are not available.
Chery unveiled the car shortly after the government announced a pilot incentive program for buyers of new energy vehicles in 13 Chinese cities.
In late January, the Ministry of Finance started offering 60,000 yuan ($8,742) in subsidy to an electric car buyer. A subsidiary between 4,000 ($582) and 50,000 yuan ($7,285) has also been made available for a hybrid car buyer, depending on the car's fuel efficient level.
But the pilot program only covers group clients such as post offices and taxi companies, instead of individual buyers.
To take the advantage of the incentive program, Chery plans to offer a slew of new energy cars.
It is working with Ricardo Co. to build a mild hybrid on the platform of its existing A5 sedan, says Liao.
Other new energy vehicle the company is developing include: a plug-in hybrid as well as a battery electric SUV based on its Tiggo SUV, and an electric car for daily commuters with lithium ion batteries based on its QQ small car, Liao said at a recent conference.
Located in Wuhu of east China's Anhui province, Chery is China's largest self brand automaker. It sold about 355,000 cars in 2008, down 6 percent from 2007, according to Automotive Resources Asia, a unit of J.D. Power & Associates.