Less than two weeks after Chery unveiled its first electric car (above) comes news that the joint venture the Chinese car maker has with Israel Corporation Ltd. is set to speed up. The holding company belonging to the Ofer family, which has $100 million or so invested in Better Place, has said that, although it will pare down its investment, it will also speed things up. When we had reported about the deal a little over a year ago it was "only" worth $225 million but apparently it had grown to $900 million. The new figure bandied about is a more manageable $500 million with each party owning a 50 percent share of Chery Quantum Auto Co.

The rearrangement doesn't call for any new cash outlays for the next couple of years beyond the $200 million each has already thrown down. Other refinements to the plan include the postponement of new plant construction in favor of using Chery's existing capacity and a reduction in the number of different models to be produced. Although Israel Corp said that "development would begin now," it was unstated what type or how many models would be produced. We'll keep an eye on the situation and let you know what develops.

[Source: Jerusalem Post]

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