The Evergrande Group signed strategic agreements with well-known names in the automotive industry last year. Among them the German automotive engineering company FEV Group, EDAG, IAV Group as well as AVL from Austria and Magna from Canada. The well-known Italian design studio Pininfarina is involved in the design of the new electric vehicles, which are to debut under the Hengchi brand.
The previous partners of Evergrande Group’s automobile subsidiary are also interesting: drive trains for electric vehicles are being developed with the German manufacturer Hofer, Evergrande Group has acquired a license for their “EV Chasis” module from the supplier Benteler, and in 2019 the Evergrande Group held 51 percent of the shares in NEVS (National Electric Vehicles Sweden). To remind, NEVS bought the insolvent Swedish car maker Saab, including the factories and patents, and their technology.
The NEVS 93 is the first EV model of the Evegrande Group in series production
Evergrande Group has also launched production of electric vehicles on the Chinese market. In June 2019, the NEVS 9-3 was presented, a pure e-car based on the Swedish Saab PhoniX-E platform and with further technology from Saab. Basically, NEVS had already completed the research and development of the 9-3 model before Evergrande was taken over, the vehicle is only being marketed by Evergrande.
Previously, Evergrande Group had already produced small series of electric cars, the NEVS 9-3 was the first model to be mass-produced. Through participations, takeovers and agreements with manufacturers of vehicle parts, batteries, drive trains and charging stations, Evergrande became a fully-fledged automobile manufacturer. It has announced plans to invest 280 billion yuan ($ 40 billion) in the construction of two factories in Nansha and Shenyang for the production of electric cars.
The first ever electric car developed by Evergrande, Hengchi 1, is slated to be launched in the first half of 2020 and series production will begin in 2021.
5 million electic vehicles by Evegrande Group
Under the new agreement with automotive partners, Evergrande plans to develop 15 new luxury and mid-range models. The real estate group’s ambitious goal is to become the world’s largest electric car company in the next three to five years and to produce and sell around 5 million vehicles within the next ten years. For this project, 8,000 additional experts and specialists are to be hired in addition to the existing employees.
Xu Jiayin, CEO of the Evergrande Group, is confident that China will soon become a leading global manufacturer of alternative drive vehicles. For the five years after the first 1 million units, the company said it hopes to produce 5 million units annually. “For core technology and companies available to be purchased, we’ll buy them all. For those we couldn’t buy, we’d like to join hands with them through cooperation,” he said.
Evergrande Group has gone on a shopping spree, acquiring the controlling stake in National Electric Vehicle Sweden for $930 million, investing more than $300 million in a new venture with supercar maker Koenigsegg, and paying $154.4 million for a 58 percent stake in lithium-ion battery maker Shanghai Center at New Energy.
Yet, Analysts are not as confident as Xu about the company’s plan…