Under the leadership of new CEO Jim Hackett, Ford Motor Company is pushing forward with plans to offer all-electric vehicles instead of hybrids and it all starts in China.

The Detroit automaker has announced the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Chinese zero-emission, electric vehicle (EV) maker Anhui Zotye Automobile Co., Ltd., to ‘develop, produce, market and service’ a totally new line of all-electric passenger vehicles in China.

“The potential to launch a new line of all-electric vehicles in the world’s largest auto market is an exciting next step for Ford in China. Electric vehicles will be a big part of the future in China and Ford wants to lead in delivering great solutions to customers,” said Peter Fleet, Ford group vice president and president, Ford Asia Pacific.

With China expected to grow the new energy vehicles market to six million units per year by 2025, Ford sees this as the perfect foundation on which to build their electric vehicle lineup.

Ford partners with Chinese company for EV production

Zotye Auto is a pioneer and China’s market leader in the electric small vehicle segment.

Details and vehicle specifications will be announced at a later date. EVs sold under the MOU will be distinctly badged under the joint venture.

“The MoU between Zotye Auto and Ford opens the door for us to explore our cooperation in the development of clean energy vehicles. This presents us with an exciting opportunity to leverage each other’s strengths in achieving a win-win situation for both parties’ growth in the fast-evolving Chinese electric vehicle market,” said Jin ZheYong, chairman and president, Anhui Zotye Automobile Co., Ltd.

While these vehicles will be exclusively for the Chinese market, this remains as part and parcel of Ford’s global electrification commitment, which includes the launch of a small electric SUV in Asia, North America and Europe as part of 13 electric vehicle lineup that will be introduced globally in the next five years.