With its Chinese joint venture partner, Shanghai Automotive Industrial Corp. (SAIC), GM manufactures Buick, Chevy and Cadillac vehicles in China, where it employs more than 13,000 workers. That number is sure to expand due to a recently announced deal to co-develop next-generation electric-drive vehicles with SAIC and the celebratory launch of Phase 1 at General Motors' Advanced Technical Center in Shanghai.
Now comes word that GM has inked a deal with General Electric to install plug-in vehicle charging stations there, first in Shanghai and eventually expanding across much of China. The idea is to develop a charging infrastructure in China to support the soon-to-be-launched-there Chevy Volt and future China-only plug-ins developed by GM and SAIC.
For its part of the deal, GE will install an undisclosed amount of residential WattStation and commercial-duty DuraStation units in China and will buy Volts for use at its facility in Shanghai.
Shanghai, September 22, 2011 – General Electric (NYSE: GE), the world's premier technology company, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with General Motors (NYSE: GM), one of the world's largest automakers, to jointly accelerate the deployment of electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure in China. The MOU was announced at the 2011 China International Electric Power and Electric Engineering Technology Exhibition in Shanghai.
The main piece of the co-operation centers on Shanghai, which was selected by the Chinese government as the country's first EV pilot city earlier this year and home to both GE's and GM's China headquarters. The two companies agreed to install GE's WattStation™ and DuraStation™ charging systems at a government-assigned international EV demonstration zone in Shanghai's Jiading District and at the GM Headquarters office in the city. WattStation™ and DuraStation™ are different specifications of EV charging systems developed by GE Energy Industrial Solutions group that enable rapid charging for electric vehicles both at home and on the road.
According to the agreement, GE will also purchase GM's Chevrolet Volt, an electric vehicle with extended-range capability, for use at its China headquarters campus in Shanghai. General Motors plans to begin selling Volts, already a successful model in the North American market, in China before the end of this year.
In addition, the companies will coordinate their respective engagement efforts with relevant Chinese government ministries, regulators and grid operators on formulation of the country's EV industrial standards.
GE China's Chief Commercial Officer Albert Wong said: "The electric vehicle era is not only about cars powered by greener fuels; a convenient charging facility network will play a key role in its success. To make it a reality in China, we bring innovative charging station solutions and are engaging grid operators, auto makers, city governments and end customers to advance their deployment. "
James Fisher, President and CEO of GE Energy Industrial Solution Asia Pacific said: "With its scale and depth, China represents an enormous opportunity for GE Energy Industrial Solution's EV charging infrastructure offerings. WattStation ™ and DuraStation ™ charging stations have been well received in the US and European markets since their launch. Accelerating expansion into China, the world's largest auto market, is a natural step for our quest to gain a leg up in the forthcoming EV era."
In August, GE Energy announced a partnership with Hertz Corporation, the world's largest airport car rental company, to advance the rollout of EVs and charging stations in China, which includes the co-location of electric vehicles and GE EV charging infrastructure as a combined offering.
According to GM Executive Director of Electrification Ray Bierzynski, "GM regards electrification as a key global industry trend. We are bringing our solutions for the electrification of the motor vehicle to China as part of our commitment to the sustainable development of the automotive industry. We look forward to working with GE to promote the acceptance and infrastructure for use of vehicles powered by electricity in the world's largest vehicle market."
The Chevrolet Volt is an electric vehicle with extended-range capability. When the Volt's battery runs low, a gas-powered engine-generator seamlessly engages to extend the driving range until the vehicle can be recharged. The Volt has a driving range of up to 80 kilometers in pure EV mode and 490 kilometers in extended range mode.
GE (NYSE: GE) is a diversified infrastructure and finance company taking on the world's toughest challenges. From aviation and power generation to financial services, healthcare solutions, oil and gas and rail, GE operates in more than 100 countries and employs about 300,000 people worldwide. GE started doing business in China in 1906. Now all GE businesses have set up operations in China with over 50 wholly owned entities and joint ventures in manufacturing, service and R&D. GE employs 16,000 people in China. The company's advance technologies and solutions are helping some of the key industries of China to realize sustainable development, include: clean energy, aviation, healthcare and rail, etc. For more information, visit the company's Web site at www.ge.com and www.ge.com/cn
General Motors traces its roots back to 1908. GM has 11 joint ventures, two wholly owned foreign enterprises and more than 35,000 employees in China. GM and its joint ventures offer the broadest lineup of vehicles and brands among automakers in China. Passenger cars and commercial vehicles are sold under the Baojun, Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, Jiefang, Opel and Wuling brands. In 2010, GM sold more than 2.35 million vehicles in China, which represented 28.8 percent growth over the prior year. It has been the sales leader among global automakers in the market for six consecutive years. More information on General Motors can be found at media.gm.com