ZF Friedrichshafen and the Wolong Electric Group have officially sealed the foundation of their joint venture, which was agreed upon in November. The objective of the JV called Wolong ZF Automotive E-Motors Co Ltd is the development and production of electric motors and components.
As agreed in the announcement in autumn 2019, ZF Friedrichshafen holds 26 per cent of the joint venture, the remaining shares are held by the Chinese partner. Wolong has already been a supplier for ZF’s e-mobility division since 2018; in the future, the supplied components will thus come from a joint production.
“The joint venture with Wolong reinforces our market position and our competitive edge in China as well, which continues to be the biggest market for electromobility in the world,” says Jörg Grotendorst, head of ZF’s E-Mobility Division. “As we’re already using the available capacities for production and development on-site, we can start operations immediately.”
Grotendorst is probably referring to the development and preparations for the start of series production, as production is scheduled to start in 2021 according to the information provided. Production will then take place at the Chinese site in Shenyang in the northeast of China, among others. Later, further locations in the EU and North America are also planned, as both companies have now announced. The partners want to make the joint venture “a global market leader for vehicle engines with sustainable energy sources,” as Jiancheng Chen, Chairman of Wolong Electric, describes it. And a global market position also requires a global setup.
The new joint venture will also supply components for the new ZF hybrid transmission. ZF has already received orders worth billions from BMW and Fiat Chrysler for the new eight-speed automatic transmission with hybrid module. More details on the hybrid automatic transmission can be read here.
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