First published by CleanTechnica Reprinted with permission.
The India-based auto manufacturer Mahindra & Mahindra is now working towards the release of electric vehicle models in the US — possibly under the Italian design house label Pininfarina and/or the Korean utility vehicle label Ssangyong Motor Co — following the opening of a new North American headquarters outside of Detroit earlier this week, company chairman Anand Mahindra has revealed. (You might say the lions are circling the wagon.)
As some background on that matter, Mahindra & Mahindra acquired Pininfarina in 2015 and Ssangyong in 2011. It has been collaborating with both companies on the development of plug-in electric vehicles. The models developed through these collaboration processes may end up being sold in both the US and China, according to Anand Mahindra.
Elsewhere, the company has intensified its testing of self-driving tractor tech, which began back in 2015 when it acquired a minority stake in Mitsubishi Agriculture Machinery. Notably, Mahindra & Mahindra is one of the largest tractor suppliers in the world, and already operates a number of US tractor assembly plants.
Reuters provides more: “Earlier this year, Autocar India reported that Pininfarina was developing a family of electric vehicles for China’s Hybrid Kinetic Group, as well as its own electric supercar. The magazine also reported that Ssangyong planned to launch an all-electric crossover vehicle in Korea in 2019. In early November, Ssangyong said it had received approval to begin testing of autonomous vehicles in Korea, but did not say when it planned to produce them.
“…While work on the self-driving vehicles is still in the early stages, Mahindra & Mahindra has been building electric vehicles in India since the mid-1990s, when it developed a small fleet battery-powered, three-wheeled rickshaws for use in Delhi, the chairman said.”
As you may recall, Mahindra & Mahindra purchased the Bangalore-based impact electric vehicle manufacturer Reva Electric Car Co back in 2010, before then rebranding it Mahindra Electric Mobility Ltd.
Mahindra’s sales success outside of India with regards to electric vehicles has been, to date, pretty lackluster — so perhaps it would make sense to sell under one of its other brands? What do those reading this think?
Interestingly, the company recently renewed ties with Ford — with the intent reportedly being to share product development and parts sourcing relating to electric vehicles, amongst other things.