McAuliffe company’s China hookup Will it work? Watchdog org

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BAIC E150 EV Electric Cars

McAuliffe company’s China Will it work?

GOING GreenTech Automotive has signed an with JAC Motors of China to a four-door sedan, called the

By Kenric Ward | Watchdog.org

– Automotive experts expressed about an electric-vehicle venture by Terry McAuliffe ’s former and a Chinese firm.

GreenTech . which McAuliffe chaired late last year, last week that it assemble a four-door sedan in with JAC Motors of China.

now, GreenTech has only a small, two-door model MyCar. Sales figures for vehicle have not been by the company, but GTA said it expects to producing 2,000 units of the Rejoice model in Mississippi by 2013.”

JAC – short for Jianghuai Co. – presents itself as one of China’s vehicle manufacturers. The state-owned is the country’s largest bus chassis and sold 226,000 vehicles in the half of 2012.

According to the Business Review , JAC will “2,000 units of third-generation EVs in order to develop the U.S. market.”

“JAC claims to have the battery capacity of EVs from to 19kWh and the driving range per on urban roads by 30 percent 100 kilometers to 130 kilometers (81 miles),” the report said.

But industry interviewed by Watchdog said the announcement left many unaddressed – including who is doing Some said JAC’s record raises concerns.

claim a 19 kilowatt-hour battery will give nearly 100 of range. A simple comparison other electric cars that to be unlikely,” said Herron . who edits the automotive website, ChargedEVS.com .

“The Leaf has a 24-kilowatt-hour pack, and is EPA with a 78-mile highway Their smaller pack provide less range you get from the Leaf.”

Herron “They don t say anything about the train other than GTA developed it — but what does mean?”

GTA — which sued this month for $85 million, that its reporting defamed the and damaged its prospects with has declined to comment.

But in 2009, GTA president/CEO Charles told the Memphis Business that GreenTech’s hybrid would be designed by a German He did not name the company, and GTA’s contains no further information.

to GTA’s MyCar, a two-seat electric vehicle with a top of 25 mph, the five-passenger Rejoice would represent a big step up in

“They’re not high-quality cars,” said of the JAC line. “They They bring no real EV to the table. They’re not high-quality

Anderson said JAC “only news when someone gets their vehicle and it alongside a competitor’s.”

KNOCK-OFF: JAC pickup truck was pulled the Beijing Auto Show Ford complained that it the F-150.

That’s what in advance of the 2012 Beijing Show . where a JAC pickup appeared to be a clone of the Ford

Ford complained and JAC’s was barred from the show.

The displayed “such blatant design cues as a tall stepped headlamps and, of a blue oval badge,” LeftLaneNews.com .

Under the hood, however, was no comparison.

In place of the Ford’s big V6 and V8 trains, the 4R3 uses a 2.8-liter that is said to produce 108 horsepower.

“That s probably not power to move a real the report concluded.

Though says Chinese automakers proven adept at cosmetic and reverse-engineering of U.S. Japanese and vehicles, he doubts that JAC or have the technological know-how to be in the electric-vehicle market.

“It’s for me to imagine that a niche of limited-speed are going to serve people,” he told Watchdog Los Angeles.

Herron said hook-up with JAC won’t many U.S. employees.

unlikely that GTA would its own motor controller and other They only need a of people to install parts and a of people for QA (quality assurance),” Herron, who also writes for .

Herron said that light-assembly operations have tried by other U.S. companies, including Coda “They take a glider (a chassis) and drop in a drive he said.

But Herron noted that Fisker and other EV start-ups suffered a series of reverses, off workers and, in some halting production.

“It feels Coda all over again, but the b t hype,” said Ash Sutcliffe . and chief editor of China Car

Chery QQ3 EV Electric Cars

“JAC models are nice cars, nothing aspirational, but are designed in Italy and have high road clearance. also had a major recall due to issues,” Sutcliffe told in an email.

That said, he “I hope they do well in the


Neither Wang nor McAuliffe had any in EV engineering or the general automotive and its many moving parts.

But in joint announcement with JAC month, GreenTech executive president for sales and marketing, McInerney . declared, “The sedan is a natural complement to our MyCar product line.”

She said GTA has “distribution agreements for the of more than 30,000 over the next three

Auto industry analysts that EVs have a market but even the most enthusiastic doubt that vehicles MyCar or Rejoice will be to compete with 34-mpg minicars like the $13,000 Spark . manufactured in Korea.

The for MyCar range up to $20,000. The costs are driven by costly packs and lower economies of

The National Highway Traffic Administration forecasts that EVs account for only 3 percent of new autos sold in 2025.

GreenTech, retired Northwest economic developer Pat Nelson the company hasn’t inspired

“I’ve got to see more than three prototype cars and a of employees before I can say it’ll into a major employer,” told the Memphis Commercial-Appeal December.

Anderson says JAC be much help with

“As state-owned company, (JAC) have an incentive to be an innovator,” Anderson, who makes business trips to China and heads Rim Advisors . a consulting firm.

“The Chinese central has been pressing for research and in EVs. The guys running the are politicians, so they want to be as doing so.

“But only one — BYD Auto — is doing much. It 12,000 sold EVs to the government, but out of a total (Chinese) market of million vehicles,” Anderson

As for the company that McAuliffe and left, Herron said, specs we know for GTA s attempt don t match the Nissan Leaf.”

this makes me reluctantly to express doubt over Automotive s prospects.”

 Contact Ward at kenric@watchdogvirginia.org

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