Chinese company New Power is showing off its Zhong Tai electric mini SUV and making big claims: that it can go 250 miles on a charge, has a top speed of 75 mph, uses li-ion batteries, holds four people and will cost somewhere between £16,300 and £20,500 ($25,790 and $32,440) when it goes on sale in the UK "within the next couple of years." If that's not enough, the car's name roughly translates to "peace and safety for the people," according to Times Online. It's like a savior, apparently.

The Times Online learned all of this when it was the first Western publication to take the Zhong Tai out for a test drive. The style is dated, they said, but found the test car (equipped with an extra battery) provided good punch off the line - until warning alarms went off and the car needed to be restarted. If the charge indicator in the dashboard was accurate, the Times figures that the 250-mile range number "is not unfeasible," as long as you're cruising through the city. Of course, the company admits that an average speed of just 60 mph drops the range to ~170 miles.

For all of New Power's big promises, let's not forget that the Zhong Tai's other EV incarnation. The SUV is actually a Zotye 2008 (pictured). The Zotye was itself based on the Daihatsu Terios and was to be sold at the Spark EV. That never happened. Thanks to Fredrik S. for the tip!

[Source: Times Online via All Cars Electric, Register Hardware]

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