While looking up automotive information, an advertisement on a page led me to the ZAP electrical vehicle website.
Their car looked suspiciously like the QQ (a subcompact four-door sold in China that was ripped off from the GM Spark). Given how slow GM was bringing products to market in the past, the knockoff came out before the actual Chevy Spark in China.
Going deeper into their website, the ZAP vehicles do seem to be made in China thus far, though they have some news about building a plant in Kentucky in the USA.
I just wonder how they are able to get away with it – their electric vehicle is only capable of 40mph. Knowing the Chevy Spark does not meet American safety standards, I am wondering how a knockoff redone as an electric car can be sold there.
A lot of their site is greenwashing – they talk about air pollution, but fail to talk about the toxicity of the batteries (lead-acid) put in their products. While their electric scooters may be popular in China, they still are responsible for a lot of environmental damage when the batteries meet the end of their life.
Maybe with autos like the Chevy Volt, GM plans to use materials so expensive that other places can’t make a knockoff for less than they can. I’ve heard the Chevy Volt will cost something like $40k US, at least before incentives kick in. No wonder it is so much better than the much-maligned Prius.