Chinese Automaker Kandi Gets Approval to Import 2 Electric Models to the U.S.
【Summary】Chinese automaker Kandi Technologies is bringing two electric model to the U.S. Kandi announced it has received approval from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to import two models to the United States—the Kandi Model EX3 compact SUV and compact Model K22. Both vehicles are fully-electric.
China is the world's biggest auto market with dozens of automakers competing with each other. The country's automakers produced over 23 million passenger vehicles in 2018. However, many of these nameplates are unfamiliar to people living outside of China, especially for residents of the U.S., many of whom have never seen a Chinese-made car on the road. However, this may no longer be the case as Chinese automaker Kandi Technologies is bringing two electric model to the U.S.
Kandi announced it has received approval from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to import two models to the United States—the Kandi Model EX3 compact SUV and compact Model K22. Both vehicles are fully-electric. The K22 resembles the Smart ForTwo which is sold by Daimler AG under the Smart brand.
Kandi Technologies is a joint venture between Kandi Vehicles and the Geely Group, which is one of China's largest automakers. Geely is also the parent company of Sweden's Volvo.
"With this, we are confident in introducing our reliable vehicles to the American public," CEO Hu Xiaoming said in a statement. "We believe both the EX3 and K22 are competitive in price and quality with advanced tech features that are in demand by American consumers."
The Kandi K22 compact EV
It's been difficult for Chinese automakers to break into the U.S. market, mainly due to safety regulations and trade disputes.
Cars sold in the U.S. require specific DOT approved safety equipment, such as anti-lock brakes, airbags, traction control, and exterior lighting. In addition, all vehicle sold in the U.S. are subject to crash testing by the NHTSA and must meet stringent emissions requirements. However, these emissions requirements are not applicable to zero-emissions electric vehicles.
In May of last year, Kandi first struck a deal in a joint venture with Texas-based Sportsman Country LLC, an retailer of automotive parts with plans to bring the two models to the U.S. Kandi acquired Sportsman shortly after the deal was announced in June 2018.
Sportsman's chairman at the time, David Shan, said, "The electric vehicles that are manufactured by the JV Company (Kandi) possess a trendy appearance, as well as good performance and affordable pricing; these are highly competitive in the U.S. market."
Kandi might become the first of many Chinese automakers eventually selling models in the U.S. Besides being the world's biggest auto market, China is also the number one with sales of EVs. Bloomberg New Energy Finance expects 2.5 million passenger EVs will be sold each year in China by 2022.
Kandi shares have surged more than 120 percent in the past year and hit a 52-week high on Wednesday after the announcement. The stock was up 34.3 percent to $7.98 a share.
There is no word on pricing or when (or where) the vehicles will be available for purchase right now, but the Kandi EX3 sells for approximately US$11,426 in China.
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