With a virtual launch Tuesday, Texas became home to what’s promising to be the most affordable electric car to hit the U.S. market.
Kandi America is now taking preorders for its K27 and K23 models with a delivery date before the end of the year.
The smallest of the two is a compact model, while the larger is the size of a small SUV.
With incentives, prices will start as low as $13,000.
“We’re making electric cars affordable, usable,” said Johnny Tai, CEO of Kandi America. “When you look at other existing electric cars on the market right now, I think their prices are either too high, or they’re not available.
When asked whether the cars could compete in a truck-loving state, Tai said he believes the economic benefits of affordable electric cars are enough to convince more Texans to go green. But at the end of the day, it was the state’s business-friendly advantages that convinced Kandi to settle in Garland.
“Texas is a very friendly business state, and I think that we’ve got a lot of resources here. The market’s really good as well, and also, we’re in the hub,” said Tai.
Along the I-35 corridor, it will be easy to distribute to other parts of the country, and eventually, Tai hopes, into South America.
Financial strategist and CEO of Wentworth Ryan Morfin said he expects more Chinese companies will follow Kandi’s lead bringing manufacturing to the United States.
“China is a very subtle but strategic trade partner, unlike the Japanese who came here in the 80s and 90s with Honda and Toyota. When China comes here, they come for multiple civil and military fusion objectives,” said Morfin.
He said its interesting timing amid a troubled US-China trade deal and ahead of an election that could be swayed by the creation of pro-China jobs.
For Kandi, it’s a chance to introduce something they believe the U.S. lacks.
Tai says they’re currently in discussions with dealerships they hope can sell the electric models direct to consumers in Texas.