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U.S. and Chinese Auto Companies Form Electric Car Partnership

U.S. electric car company Ruff & Tuff Electric Vehicles (RTEV) and Shuanghuan Automobile Company of China will form a partnership to produce and market affordable all-electric cars, according to a statement from RTEV. The first automobile will be a two-seat compact car to be launched in the United States by May 2009. The vehicle will be known as the Wheego Whip in the United States and the E-Noble in the rest of the world. Georgia-headquartered RTEV says the car will be capable of speeds up to 60 miles per hour and will be sold to different countries to meet their individual safety specifications; in the United States, it will be initially launched as a low-speed vehicle with a 25-mile-per-hour maximum speed or a medium-speed vehicle with speeds to 35 miles per hour, depending on individual state regulations. The car will travel 50 miles on a single charge and will be rechargeable through plug-in to any standard 110- or 220-volt outlet. The basic assembly for both the Wheego Whip and the E-Noble will take place in Shijiahuang, China, with the final assembly for the E-Noble remaining in China and that of the Wheego Whip taking place in the United States; the company did not release information about a location for that plant.

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