AUBURN HILLS, Mich., March 20, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- ALTe Powertrain Technologies (ALTe), developer of the first range-extended plug-in electric hybrid vehicle powertrain for light commercial fleet vehicle applications, announced today that it has successfully completed a Cooperation Agreement to establish a new commercial vehicle manufacturing Joint Venture with the Henan Benma Company (Benma) in the Henan province of China.
Benma currently produces 20 different models of commercial vehicles for the domestic Chinese market with a production capacity of 300,000 vehicles per year. The Board at Benma made the decision to team up with ALTe to form a new original equipment manufacturing (OEM) company that will assemble and sell under a new brand nameplate. The JV will produce a select portfolio of commercial vehicles powered exclusively by plug in electric and hybrid powertrain systems engineered by ALTe. The JV will utilize an existing manufacturing license that was previously granted to Benma.
Target volumes will ramp up to 10,000 vehicles per year and an initial purchase order for 1,000 units has been committed to the JV by Benma. The JV will start with production of a 3 ton light commercial truck in addition to a medium sized bus as quickly as ALTe can complete the application engineering and validation testing.
Vice Chairman Li of Benma expressed appreciation for everyone's hard work, stating that "With a good start and our tireless efforts, I believe that our business will succeed."
John Thomas, Chairman and CEO of ALTe stated that "ALTe is delighted to have formed a strong relationship with Benma. We have always observed that an informed strategic investor would be our best ally and that is precisely what we have found with Benma. Working together with Benma in China and the USA, we expect to implement the technology improvements and cost reductions to enable broad adoption of plug in electric hybrid powered vehicles."
ALTe is the developer of plug in electric and hybrid powertrain systems used to propel light commercial vehicles. The system will be retrofit into existing fleet vehicles as well as used in "glider" applications of new vehicles to dramatically increase their fuel economy and lower emissions. Designed to replace a base V-8 internal combustion engine powertrain, the system's patented technology improves fuel economy from 80 percent to 200 percent. The company is based in Auburn Hills, Michigan. For more information, visit http://www.altept.com.
About Henan Benma Company, Ltd.:
The company was founded in 1952 and entered into production of farm equipment and other vehicles in 1982. Benma has a corporate campus of nearly 350 acres where it employs over 3,000. Sales revenue recently topped the 10 billion CNY ($1.6 billion USD) level. Benma is a very progressive and well-managed company led by Chairman Chu with many awards for its achievements and is ISO 9000 certified.
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