via motors phev truck productionWell at least it wasn't the governor of San Luis Potosi, Mexico who was crash-testing a Via Motors extended-range plug-in hybrid truck. Because that would've been weird. This week, Via opened its first-ever production assembly line – located in that central Mexican state – and celebrated by having Gov. Fernando Toranzo take one of the company's pick-ups out for a spin. A safe one, we surmise.

Via says it located its new factory in San Luis Potosi because it's in a free-trade zone and close to the General Motors plant where the bodies of the Via trucks are being made. The factory will be able to produce as many as 10,000 vehicles a year and is conveniently located next to the Kansas City Southern Rail Line. Via unveiled the plant after confirming that its trucks passed crash tests earlier this month.

In early October, Via said it won a $20-million contract to supply vehicles to California's South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD). The company will sell PHEV pick-up trucks, cargo vans and SUVs, and says its vehicles can go as far as 40 miles on electric power and reach a fuel-economy figure of more than 100 miles per gallon (equivalent). Check out Via's crash-test blog post here and read Via's press release below.
Show full PR text
VIA Launches High Volume Electric Vehicle Assembly Plant in Mexico

SAN LUIS POTOSI, MEXICO--(Marketwired - Oct 31, 2013) - VIA Motors inaugurated its first high volume electric vehicle assembly line this week in a ribbon cutting ceremony held at its new facility in San Luis Potosi, Mexico. The Governor, Dr. Fernando Toranzo, officiated at the ceremony along with VIA Motors president Alan Perriton, and Pablo Acedo, president of VIA Motors Latin America (VMLM).

After test driving a VIA electric pick-up truck at the event, Governor Toranzo said, "I was impressed with how smooth, quiet, and powerful the truck is, and what a pleasure it is to drive." We are pleased that VIA chose to locate here, and we are excited to join with them in building electric vehicles that are so key to our future," added Governor Toranzo.

Alan Perriton, president of VIA Motors remarked, "VIA is here because of our alliance with Grupo Geurra (GEG) and because this region of Mexico is well known for high quality automobile production and a robust supply network."

VIP guests at the ceremony included Armando Hernandez, Director of Assembly Operations at GM Silao.

The new facility is strategically located in a free trade zone near several major automakers and suppliers. New vehicles are transported from the General Motors production facility in Silao, to VIA's assembly plant in nearby San Luis Potosi, where they are transformed into electric vehicles by integrating VIA's proprietary extended range electric power train. The facility employs a unique conveyor-scissor lift system that moves conventional vehicles through 8 assembly stations where technicians raise or lower the vehicle at each station to install electric and other components.

"VIA's unique assembly system will be able to output two electric vehicles per hour and 10,000 vehicles per year," said Pablo Acedo. "We are proud to be first to deploy this innovative assembly technology here in Mexico, to transform conventional vehicles into advanced, extended range electric vehicles," said Mr. Acedo. "San Luis Potosi will soon become synonymous with electric vehicles," concluded Acedo.

The new facility is adjacent to the NAFTA highway and Kansas City Southern Rail line (KCS) for easy transport to the U.S. and Canada. After the ribbon was cut in front of the new assembly line, a group of line workers gathered for a photo and shouted "Vaya con VIA!"

About VIA Motors
VIA Motors is a privately held electric vehicle development and manufacturing company. VIA employs a streamlined second stage manufacturing process to integrate its proprietary V-DRIVE™ power train into new OEM vehicles, then sells directly to fleets under the VTRUX™ brand name. VIA VTRUX deliver up to 40-mile battery range and unlimited extended range, averaging over 100 mpg in typical daily driving. More information on VIA Motors may be found at: VIAmotors.com. Video with Bob Lutz: VIAmotors.com/erev. Online calculator to estimate savings: VIAmotors.com/payback


VIA Motors Completes Crash Testing on Electric Cargo Van

October 24th, 2013Blog, News, Press Releases
VIA Motors Completes Crash Testing on Electric Cargo Van

VIA Motors President, Alan Perriton announced today that the world's first extended range electric cargo van by VIA Motors, has successfully passed all crash testing required prior to mass production.

"We were very pleased with the results of the crash testing of our electric cargo van. The engineering work done to integrate the VIA's electric technology has been exceptional and the vehicles have exceeded our expectations in all tests that were performed. We are now moving on to complete certification and begin mass production," said Alan Perriton, president of VIA Motors.

VIA works closely with automakers to provide an electric power train upgrade to full size vehicles like the pick-up truck, cargo van and the SUV to achieve up to 100 mpg on average.

VIA starts with a production vehicle that has already passed all crash and safety tests, but then integrates its electric power train components including a lithium ion battery pack and electric motors. VIA then re-certifies and crash tests each vehicle model with the new components and sells the electrified models under the VIA brand name.

About VIA Motors
VIA Motors is a privately held electric vehicle development and manufacturing company. VIA employs a streamlined second stage manufacturing process to integrate its proprietary V-DRIVE™ power train into new OEM vehicles, then sells directly to fleets under the VTRUX™ brand name. VIA VTRUX deliver up to 40-mile battery range and unlimited extended range, averaging over 100 mpg in typical daily driving. More information on VIA Motors may be found at: VIAmotors.com. To see a video with Bob Lutz go to VIAmotors.com/news/press-releases/erev/. To estimate operational savings using an online calculator go to VIAmotors.com/news/fleet_calculator.


I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.


    • 1 Second Ago
  • 4 Comments
      Levine Levine
      • 1 Year Ago
      Yeah, buy American brand vehicles with pride .... even if they're made in Mexico. Let's all be proud that GM and Via received your tax money to create jobs in Mexico.
        Letstakeawalk
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Levine Levine
        Mexico is part of America. What it isn't, is part of the United States. (There's a lot more to the Americas than just the US.)
        Smoking_dude
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Levine Levine
        so what? parts of german cars are made in the czech republic, italian fiat are made in poland. so if the mexicans earn some hones pesos, they can buy american goods. just don't be so small minded. otherwise all the money goes to saudi arabia for oil and no one bats an eye.
      EVnerdGene
      • 1 Year Ago
      How many for $20M ? Who, what, when, where, how, and you forgot how many ?