Oslo, Norway and Pasadena, California – The Norwegian electric car producer TH!NK has reached across the Atlantic and established TH!NK North America in partnership with clean-tech investors RockPort Capital Partners and Kleiner Perkins Caulfield & Byers.
“The TH!NK city is the world’s only crash-tested and highway-certified electric vehicle and is ideal for markets such as California where we will initiate demonstration projects offering an exceptionally safe and fun car to drive,” said Jan-Olaf Willums, CEO of TH!NK Global. “We are proud to partner with the two pioneering investors in the clean tech field and to launch TH!NK city in North America with them.”
The new venture was announced at the 2008 FORTUNE Brainstorm Green Conference held in Pasadena, California, that brought chief executives from all over North America together to talk about the business opportunities of “going green.”
Ray Lane, a Kleiner Perkins Managing Partner and Chairman of TH!NK North America, said, “The transportation industry is undergoing its largest transformation since Henry Ford built the Model T. Today we are witnessing a seminal event – the first highway-capable electric vehicle intended for mass production, representing a big step toward a zero emission transportation industry.”
“We believe there is a dramatic shift underway of how people think about mobility. Global consumer demand is forcing the industry to come up with sustainable solutions, including the development of zero emission vehicles,” said Wilber James, a Managing General Partner of RockPort Capital Partners and acting President of TH!NK North America.
TH!NK city is an environmental vehicle that is emission free and 95 percent recyclable. It reaches a top speed of 100 km (65 miles) per hour and can drive up to 180 km (110 miles) on a single charge. TH!NK city meets all European and U.S. federal motor vehicle safety requirements.
At the Geneva Motorshow earlier this year, TH!NK announced a strategic partnership with energy giant General Electric, also an investor in TH!NK At the show, TH!NK unveiled its future car, the TH!NK Ox, the first 4/5-seater fully-electric vehicle which is slated to begin production in 2010/11.
TH!NK has also established partnerships in the U.S. with battery suppliers A123 and EnerDel.
The TH!NK city is currently produced in Norway and international sales are scheduled to begin in Scandinavia, with Switzerland and France also being the initial focus areas. Sales, other than initial trial and demonstration projects, will begin in the North American market in 2009.