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Ford Motor Company might be looking to its joint venture ally – Changan Automobile Group – to manufacture electric vehicles in China. Bloomberg cites Ford chief executive officer Alan Mulally, in China for a groundbreaking ceremony, as the source of this intel:

China's Changan Automobile Group announced that it will open a research and development (R&D) center in Detroit, MI. By setting its sights on the Motor City, Changan will become the first Chinese automaker with a R&D facility in the Detroit area.

Early last month, China's Changan Auto reportedly pulled the plug on its hybrid Jiexun. The cancellation was claimed to have stemmed from the hybrid's abysmal sales. Therefore, it came as somewhat of a surprise to discover that on Tuesday, Changan and LG Chem, a South Korean chemicals company, signed a strategic supply partnership for lithium-ion batteries for the automaker's alternative energy vehicles.