China's FAW rolls out first batch of plug-in hybrid and electric vehicles

Last week, major Chinese automaker First Automobile Works (FAW) rolled out its first batch of independently-developed alternative energy vehicles.
Marketed under FAW's Besturn brand, the automaker's first 20 alt-energy vehicles included a plug-in hybrid model that consumes 60 percent less fuel than a conventional vehicle and boasts an electric-only range of 44 miles. FAW's pure electric vehicle reportedly offers 111 miles of zero-emissions driving.

Xu Jianyi, FAW chairman, says the automaker will stick to its strategy of developing plug-in hybrid and electric-only vehicles in the future. To the end, FAW will invest 9.8 billion yuan ($1.5 billion U.S. at the current exchange rate) over the next five years to develop and manufacture no less than eight alternative-energy automobiles, including three commercial-duty vehicles.

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