Zotye was founded in 2005 and is claimed to be a market leader for EVs in China; joint venture with Ford will only produce EVs
Jimi Beckwith
10 November 2017

Ford has entered a joint venture with Chinese manufacturer Zotye to create a new China-only brand producing electric vehicles (EVs). 

The £575 million joint venture, which will create an all-new brand for the Chinese market, has equal investment and equity from both brands. 

Zotye is infamous for its copy of the Porsche Macan, but will work with Ford in the new joint venture on a range of small EVs. 

Ford says that Zotye, with 22,500 EV sales in China so far this year, is the market leader in the area, with growth of 14% year-on-year. Zotye’s input will be globally beneficial to Ford, which has few electrified vehicles currently in its line-up yet plans to electrify 70% of its range in China by 2025. 

No comment has been offered on targets for global electrification, but Ford has revealed that products outside of China will benefit from the joint venture.

Zotye director Ying Jianren said: “This is an important day for Zotye as we partner with Ford to help advance the growth of the Chinese automotive industry. We will work closely together to help meet Chinese consumers’ growing demand for electric vehicles.”

Ford’s Asia boss, Peter Fleet, said: “We are delighted to have signed this joint venture agreement with Zotye to form our third joint venture automotive company in China. Subject to regulatory approval, Zotye-Ford will introduce a new brand family of small all-electric vehicles.”

Fleet also suggested that the joint brand will explore offering mobility solutions and new connectivity technologies as demand for them grows.

Read more: 

Zotye SR9 is a Porsche Macan clone

Ford trademarks Energi name for electrified Kuga, Transit and Explorer

History of the Chinese copycat car: picture gallery

Insight: why demand from China is spurring growth of electric car sales

Our Verdict

Ford Fiesta

In remaking Britain’s best-selling car, Ford has trodden lightly with the new Fiesta. But does the all-new supermini do enough to keep its place at the head of the table?

Join the debate


10 November 2017

So Ford looks East to clone a Chinese Electric Vevicle. Looks like the phase ‘Cheap Chinese copy’ has now become a ‘Cheap American copy‘.

If only Ford had the foresight 5 years ago


Hydrogen cars just went POP

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • Vauxhall VXR8 GTS-R
    Car review
    12 January 2018
    Vauxhall bids farewell to its line of Aussie performance legends in some style with the limited edition VXR8 GTS-R
  • Alfa Romeo Stelvio
    Car review
    12 January 2018
    Alfa Romeo’s first SUV aims to hoist the handling panache of the Giulia saloon
  • Volkswagen Polo 1.0 TSI
    First Drive
    11 January 2018
    Sixth-generation Volkswagen Polo arrives in the UK with a emphasis on safety and refinement. Could that be enough to see it become supermini king?
  • Skoda Karoq 1.6 TDI 115 SE
    First Drive
    11 January 2018
    The smaller Skoda Karoq diesel is a sensible choice, if a little underpowered; even in base SE trim, though, you're unlikely to be left wanting for kit
  • Toyota Yaris GRMN
    First Drive
    10 January 2018
    First new-breed Toyota hot hatch is expensive but within sight of its best-handling rivals. Troubled in some ways, but appealingly honest, engaging, characterful and different