U.S. law firm Weil, Gotshal & Manges and King & Wood Mallesons have represented U.S. company CODA Holdings and China’s Great Wall Motor Company on their agreement to co-develop, build and sell electric vehicles (EVs) for the North American, Chinese and European auto markets.
Shanghai-based partner Anthony Wang led the Weil Gotshal team that advised CODA, while King & Wood Mallesons acted for Great Wall Motors.
Reuters reported that the partnership allows both automakers to develop and sell EVs in a "very efficient and cost-effective manner," CODA Chief Executive Phil Murtaugh said in a statement.
The vehicle "is intended to be the most affordable EV on the market, comparable to entry-level internal combustion engine vehicles," CODA said in a media release. It will be ready for the U.S. market by mid-2014 and will be based on an existing Great Wall vehicle.
Initially, the vehicle will be assembled at Great Wall Motors’ factory in Baoding, China. Final assembly of cars made for the U.S. auto market will be built at CODA's U.S. factory.
This would be the second vehicle for CODA, a Los Angeles-based startup that focuses on building all-electric cars. Earlier this year, the company began selling its first electric sedan, the 2012 CODA, in California.
The sedan costs $37,250 and goes 125 miles on a single charge, according to the company. In California, incentives lower the price of the sedan to $27,250.
Last month, CODA withdrew its application for a Department of Energy loan to build a plant in Columbus, Ohio. It applied for nearly $336 million in federal loans as well as nearly $60 million in state incentives.
But over the past two years, the company has obtained $300 million in equity, said Forrest Beanum, head of government relations and external affairs for CODA.