Another day, another Chinese electric car startup with major ambitions and big funding.
WM = Weltmeister = World Master
This week, Bloomberg reported on WM Motor, an electric car startup led by Freeman Shen, the exec behind the acquisition of Volvo by Chinese auto maker Zhejiang Geely. Shen left Geely two years ago and launched WM Motor last year.
The company has now reportedly raised $1 billion in funding, making WM Motor the latest well-funded startup hoping to make or sell electric cars in China. The long list of newcomers includes Chinese auto parts maker Wanxiang, which owns Karma Automotive (the revived Fisker), NextEV, Atieva, and LeEco, which funds Faraday Future.
Bloomberg noted there’s more than 200 Chinese electric car companies building 4,000 new electric car models.
WM Motor plans build a factory in eastern China, launch its first electric car model in 2018, and eventually produce 100,000 cars per year. The company’s cars will target the mass market in contrast to Tesla’s current cars and Karma Automotive’s planned first cars.
Freeman Shen, founder and CEO of WM Motor Technology Co, Ltd poses for a photograph at his office in shanghai, China, August 1, 2016