daimler byd mar 2010.automotiveIT

In March, 2010, Daimler CEO Dieter Zetsche (left) and BYD Chairman Wang Chuan-fu signed their partnership for electric vehicles in China (Photo: Daimler)

Daimler and Chinese car and battery maker BYD said they plan to show a concept version of their planned electric vehicle at next year's Beijing auto show.

The German premium car maker said the joint venture between the two companies, Shenzhen BYD Daimler New Technology Co. Ltd. (BDNT), plans to have its own presence at the auto show, which will be held in April. BDNT intends to showcase its "green vision" and unveil the interior and exterior design of the planned electric vehicle. The full EV is scheduled for launch in 2013.

News of the planned showing follows a year of speculation that the joint venture had run into difficulties and that a product might not materialize.

But Daimler said BDNT has already started work on building up the EV's first prototype, which it said should be running by spring next year. The joint venture will combine BYD’s battery technology and e-drive systems with Daimler's expertise in designing a safe EV.

Supplier sourcing for the new EV is also nearly completed, Daimler said, with parts coming from both international and local China-based suppliers.

Daimler and BYD agreed in 2010 to establish a 50-50 owned joint venture to develop an EV to be built and sold in China. BDNT received its business license from Chinese authorities in February, 2011.

The vehicle will be marketed under a new brand jointly created and owned by BDNT.