Electric vehicle (EV) maker Think and Finnish production partner Valmet Automotive have long dreamed of the day when the automaker's City EV would be available to customers in Finland. First establishing a collaborative agreement back in 2009, Think and Valmet announced today that the City is now officially available in Finland.
Finland's first batch of Think Citys have been claimed by green delivery pioneers A2B. As of now, Think will sell its City EV through a lone dealership in Helsinki. The company's plan calls for additional full-service dealerships to open in other Finnish cities such as Turku, Tampere, Lahti, Jyväskylä and Oulu. With the addition of Finland, Think's reach now extends across much of Europe and include countries such as the Netherlands, Norway, Spain, France, Austria and Switzerland. The company's Elkhart, IN production facility should be operational by the end of next year, helping the Think City reach U.S. shores in limited supply by year's end. Additionally, the automaker is working with Japanese partner Itochu to develop operations in Asia. Hit the jump for more on Think's entry into the Finnish market. Thanks to Mart S. for the tip!
HELSINKI EV MOTOR SHOW 2010: THINK ANNOUNCES NEW SALES OPERATION IN FINLAND WITH PRODUCTION PARTNER VALMET AUTOMOTIVE
- First new dealerships established in Helsinki and Espoo
- Quality, engineering excellence, EV expertise and sales experience make Valmet the obvious distribution partner in their home market
Exhibiting at the Helsinki show for the second time, THINK and Valmet Automotive have developed a dedicated new THINK EV test track adjacent to the show stand. Test drives will be available in the latest generation THINK City throughout the duration of the show.
First deliveries of the THINK City in Finland will be to green delivery pioneers A2B, through a new THINK dealership in Helsinki. Further full-service dealerships will be opened in the coming months in other Finnish cities such as Turku, Tampere, Lahti, Jyväskylä and Oulu.
Valmet Automotive President, Ilpo Korhonen, said: "Since we entered into collaboration with THINK in 2009 there has been very high level of interest from customers, both business and private, wanting to buy the THINK City. This hasn't been possible in Finland until now, and we are extremely excited by the prospect of being exclusive distributor here, especially with the experience and expertise of our new sales and marketing director Hans Svensson leading the sales operation."
THINK CEO, Richard Canny, added: "We know Valmet Automotive very well, and have the utmost respect and pride in their attention to quality and technical excellence in everything they do. We are sure this attitude will carry through to the newly established sales operation in this sophisticated and very EV-ready market."
The latest generation THINK City is a purpose-built, all-electric and fully air-conditioned urban car that can travel at highway speeds and cover 160 kilometres on a single charge (via conventional household outlet), with zero local emissions. It is the world's first EV to be granted certification with the European CE conformity mark and EU homologation requirements (M1 certificate). To achieve these exacting standards, the THINK City has successfully completed very thorough testing and validation procedures.
European production of the THINK City continues in Finland with manufacturing partner Valmet Automotive, known for excellent manufacturing quality of premium cars. Customer deliveries are taking place across Europe in selected key EV markets such as The Netherlands, Norway, Spain, France, Austria, Switzerland and now Finland.
THINK has also announced plans to establish a U.S. production facility during 2011 in Elkhart County, Indiana, and is working with Japanese partner Itochu on developing operations in Asia.
THINK is a pioneer in electric vehicles and a leader in electric vehicle technology, developed and proven over 19 years. It is one of the few companies that has a 'ready-to-market' fully electric vehicle – the THINK City. With its market-leading range, driveability and recyclability, the THINK City is the first vehicle of its type to be granted pan-European regulatory safety approval and CE certification.
THINK is also a leader in electric drive-system technology, and was the first to offer a modular and flexible EV drive-train solution in the business-to-business sector. With its Scandinavian origins and sustainability mindset, THINK is one of the most carbon efficient car companies in the world.
About Valmet Automotive:
Valmet Automotive is a leading provider of automotive engineering and manufacturing services to premium cars makers. In 40 years, the company has produced in Finland over 1,100,000 high-quality vehicles, including 220,000 Porsche Boxster and Porsche Cayman sports cars.
The manufacturing of both the THINK City and the Garia golf car started at Valmet Automotive in 2009. The production of the Fisker Karma hybrid vehicle is scheduled to start next year.
Valmet Automotive is a part of Metso Group.