Bosch wants to increase competence in wheel-hub motors for EVs (Photo: Bosch)

Robert Bosch plans to enter into a joint venture with China's Ningbo Polaris Technology to jointly make motors for electric Scooters, a new business area for the German automotive supplier.

Bosch will have a majority share of the venture, which will develop, manufacture and sell a range of eScooter motors. Ningbo Polaris makes and sells such motors in China under the Poltm name. It sold more than 1 million eScooter motors in 2011.

Bosch estimates that, worldwide, about 27 million eScooter motors were built in 2011, with China representing all but 2 pc of that output. And with an expected annual growth rate of 6 pc, it expects the global market to reach 46 million units by 2020.

"Therefore, besides being a strong addition to Bosch Electrical Drives, the establishment of this joint venture is a milestone for us as we move into the global eScooter motor market," Udo Wolz, president of Bosch's Electrical Drivers division, said in a press release.

Bosch wants to develop competence in particular in the growing market for wheel-hub motors, the biggest selling motor application for EVs. The German supplier already makes e-mobility products ranging from drive units for electrically assisted two-wheelers to complete powertrains for hybrid and electric vehicles.

For Ningbo Polaris, the tie-up with Bosch means it can more easily cater to clients' evolving technical needs. "Together with Bosch, we will produce the large-scale synergy that is essential for continuous delivery of innovative high quality products for the global eScooter market," said Ningbo Polaris CEO Dacheng Luo.