Spy Shots: Lifan 320e EV testing in China

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Spy Shots showing the new Lifan 320e testing in China, it will be launched on the Chinese electric car market later this year. The Lifan 320e is an electric variant of the Lifan 320 hatchback. The vehicle is developed by a new company called Lifan Electric Vehicle Corporation is cooperation with the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS).

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The CAS is a rather renowned institute and one can’t help but wonder why they would work with Lifan, except when Lifan paid for it, but then look at the specs:

The 320e is powered by a 7.5kw electric motor, getting its power from a good old hardcore lead acid battery. Top speed is 67km/h and range is 120km/h. Charging takes 8 hours. Total weight is 1020kg. The package doesn’t seem to compelling, but Lifan is apparently also working on a variant with a lithium battery.

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We actually do not expect this thing will be launched on the mass market. It is more likely yet another demonstration project with a small production run for some government agency that will use the vehicles for a few months before the whole project is canned and the cars are crapped. But Lifan can say they are a green company, and pick up some sweet government subsidies along the way…

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  1. Not compelling indeed. It looks like something put together in a backyard garage. In 2008 we heard about a “Lifan Electrical Car Industrialization Project” established in Huhehot, Inner Mongolia, but nothing seems to have come of that. Although Lifan also has an EV version of the 620 we are not seeing much activity to accommodate Beijing’s push.

  2. This car is already in the market in Shandong and Henan province, where these kind of electric vehicles are very popular. Actually we can say that these two province have the world largest market for EV, as last year was sold more then 170.000 EV like this converted Lifan 320.
    The price of the car is around 50.000 RMB, that is suitable for most of the buyers. Even this kind of vehicles are not regularly homologated, they are accepted in the rural area and some third of fourth tier cities in the two provinces. It’s an enormous market that attracts now many official car maker including Zotye, Chery, Geely and many others.
    My advise for all of them : introduce a range extender for these EV using a motorcycle IC motor, like in the BMW i3. With few thousand RMB more the people will be range anxiety free and will enjoy more their vehicles.


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