THINK will begin selling the THINK City, one of the world’s first highway-capable urban EVs, in the US later this year. The company plans to invest $43.5 million in building improvements and equipment in Elkhart County, and the plant could begin assembling vehicles in early 2011.
|The THINK City will appear in Detroit next week at the North American International Auto Show 2010. Click to enlarge.|
THINK’s investments in Elkhart County will support manufacturing capacity for more than 20,000 vehicles a year. The company started delivering the latest generation of its THINK City model to customers in Europe last month.
The THINK City is a purpose-built, all-electric car designed for urban environments. It can travel at highway speeds for more than 100 miles on a single charge. It is the first EV to be granted certification with the European CE conformity mark and EU homologation requirements (M1 certificate). (Earlier post.)
European production of the THINK City is already underway in Finland with manufacturing partner Valmet Automotive, which also assembles the Porsche Boxster and Cayman models for Porsche AG. Production will continue at Valmet Automotive to support European market demand, where sales have begun in selected key EV markets such as Austria, Denmark, The Netherlands, Norway, Spain and Sweden.
THINK is joining Indianapolis-based lithium-ion battery maker, EnerDel in choosing Indiana for a North American manufacturing location. Ener1, the parent company of Enerdel, is a 31% equity stakeholder in THINK. In addition to incentives provided by the State of Indiana and Elkhart County, THINK plans to utilize funding from the US Department of Energy ATVM loan program to establish its new production facility.