China: Ford Pulls Plug On EV Joint Venture Plans With Zotye

Ford terminates plan to produce electric vehicles in China in partnership with Zotye.

Ford changed its mind about the electric vehicle joint venture with China’s Zotye Automobile, hinted at in 2017. The initial plan was to invest $756 million (total) in a 50-50 joint venture and produce small electric cars.

According to the manufacturer, the general reasons are unspecified changes in the EV industry and in government policies in China over the past few years.

“It said that China’s electric vehicle industry and government policies had undergone major changes since the agreements were signed in 2017 and 2018, prompting Ford’s decision. Ford didn’t specify which changes triggered its move.”

Well, the Chinese market really has changed a lot and if the project did not receive a green light for so long it was clear that it might not get it at all.

Ford now is expected to pursue a more “flexible business model in China”. Most recently, the company announced that the Ford Mustang Mach-E will be produced by the Changan Ford, a 50:50 joint venture between Changan Automobile and Ford Motor Company, in Chongqing, China.

Only time will tell whether Ford will be able to find the right formula for the Chinese New Energy Vehicle market. It’s not easy, as there are tons of very competitive startups, a strong Tesla position, Volkswagen offensive and a lot of changes in the battery technology.

Source:Reuters

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