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USA/China: China’s SAIC Motors and GM Complete Electric Car JV

Sept. 27 – General Motors (GM) recently announced a joint venture (JV) in the promising electric car market with Chinese auto giant, SAIC Motor, in what will be the 11th JV between the two industry leaders. The partnership, Pan Asia Technical Automotive Center (PATAC), will constitute what’s being called “a new electric vehicle architecture” in China with GM and PATAC engineers collaborating on the development of key components and vehicle structures, according to a GM news release.

As expected, GM will bring to the table much of the needed technical expertise and its global network, with SAIC Motor contributing its knowledge of the domestic market and distribution channels. GM innovations in batteries and inverters will be transferred to PATAC, while SAIC will inject an undisclosed cash contribution into the project in recognition of GM`s past and present technological contributions, according to GM`s Vice-Chairman Stephen Girsky.

In the end, the two companies expect to see new innovations hit the market faster, and improved economies of scale, said SAIC President Chen Hong.

Tim Lee, president of GM International Operations, expressed similar sentiments, acknowledging that the two parties know full well the disadvantages of going it alone in this industry.

“The co-development of this new electric vehicle architecture demonstrates the broad range of benefits made possible by the strong partnership between SAIC and GM,” Lee said. “For almost 15 years, our two companies have forged some of the industry’s most successful joint ventures. This unprecedented level of cooperation is another demonstration of our companies’ commitment to work collaboratively.”
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