Electric-vehicle maker Zap is ready to make its big US splash. No, really. And the China-based company has some muscle behind it from Tianjin Battery Company Ltd., also known as Lishen.

Lishen reached an agreement to finance "several thousand" electric-vehicle conversions in the US so that Zap can make its mark in the domestic fleet-vehicle sector. And Zap says the Zap-Lishen agreement may expand beyond US borders, though wasn't more specific about timeframe or vehicle unit numbers. Lishen makes lithium-ion batteries for Apple, Samsung, LG and Dell, among other customers, and is the largest maker of electric-vehicle battery packs in China.

Zap and its Jonway Auto affiliate said in late April that Zap Jonway's new electric vehicles, the Urbee and Sparkee, had received 25,000 orders from more than 30 dealers in China, and that about 2,000 vehicles would be produced every month starting in June. Most of those orders were for the Urbee, which has about a 90-mile single-charge range. The higher-end Sparkee, which will cost between $7,000 and $12,000, has a 112-mile range for its lithium-ion battery version and a 75-mile range for its lead-acid battery model. Check out Zap's press release about the Lishen agreement below.
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ZAP Announces Strategic Alliance with Tianjin Lishen Battery Company Ltd to Finance Several Thousand US EV Fleet Vehicles

SANTA ROSA, Calif., June 10, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- ZAP (ZAAP), an Electric Vehicle (EV) automotive company incorporated in California and headquartered in Santa Rosa, California has entered into a strategic alliance with Tianjin Battery Company Ltd ("Lishen") www.lishen.com.cn , whereby Lishen will provide financing several thousand full vehicle EV conversion of US EV fleet vehicles using Lishen's latest technology in lithium Ion batteries and ZAP's proprietary patented Vehicle Control Unit (VCU). ZAP, over the last few years has been pursuing the EV fleet market in the US, and developed a custom designed power train for a US delivery fleet with the goal of becoming a supplier to their electric power train which will replace the gasoline ones currently being used. After undergoing multiple iterations, its latest version released for trial will undergo extreme weather conditions, using Lishen's battery pack with improved energy efficiency and reliability. ZAP will begin financing discussions with fleet operator pending successful completion of the trial which is likely to run through the winter season.

At the core of ZAP's EV technology is its patented VCU developed by ZAP's joint venture in China, which provides a smart management system (Z-Smart) between the electric motor, the battery management system, and the overall electric power system that supports power brakes, power steering, HVAC, power windows, on-board charge and discharge, fast charge and all of the electrical control units of the vehicle, including GPS and wireless communication to the mobile. Z-Smart is adapted for various configurations, different size motors and battery systems for all of the electric vehicles delivered by ZAP, for both its lithium battery EVs as well as the lead acid battery models. Z-Smart is being incorporated into these fleet vehicles to improve performance, safety and efficiency of the converted vehicles and to provide convenient mobile communication to the driver on the charge levels and recharging status.

This strategic alliance with Lishen to finance EVs in the international market for large scale deployment is being explored in other markets where large volume EV fleets are being deployed by governments and institutions to reduce fossil fuel dependency, fuel costs and reduce pollution in the densely populated cities. ZAP plans to utilize this financing alliance to pursue other volume fleet opportunities in the Americas and S.E. Asia.

Lishen is the premier Li-ion battery supplier in China, and is the qualified supplier to Apple, Samsung, LG, HP, Dell, Lenova and the State Grid of China. It is the largest supplier of automotive EV battery packs in China, supplying to the majority of the electric bus companies, and the new line of EV sedans supplied by Geely, SAIC, GM, Foton (First Auto of China), ChangAnn and many others, and is the largest volume producer of lithium batteries for energy storage in China. It is majority owned by China National Off-shore Oil (CNOOC), various Tianjin funds and large energy corporations in China.
ZAP's joint venture team in China is recognized for its proven EV technology expertise in delivering high performance EV systems, and has delivered multiple power train designs to local vehicle manufacturers including EV versions of KIA in China, with multiple configurations to support fast battery swapping.

About ZAP and Jonway Auto
ZAP and Jonway Auto designs and manufactures quality, affordable new energy and electric vehicles (EVs). Jonway Automobile has ISO 9000 manufacturing facilities, engineering, sales and customer services facilities in China, ZAP Jonway has production capacity of up to 50,000 vehicles per year, and has established sales distribution network in China. ZAP, an early pioneer of EVs, brings to both companies a broad range of EV product technologies that is applied to the new product lines. ZAP Jonway is headquartered in Santa Rosa, California and Jonway Auto is located in Zhejiang Province of the People's Republic of China. Additional information about ZAP Jonway is available at http://www.zapworld.com.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 3 Comments
      EVnerdGene
      • 6 Months Ago
      "big US splash" ? Maybe from belly-flops. The best thing ZAP could do is change their name, and pray no one makes the connection. I'd bet against this happening.
      Doug
      • 6 Months Ago
      What ever happened to the Zaptera?
      danfred311
      • 6 Months Ago
      I'm holding my breath