PARIS – Chinese smart EV startup CHJ Automotive and French time share rental operator Clem signed a cooperation intent at the Viva Technology 2017 conference here on June 16 where the two partners plan to set up a joint venture in Paris to provide free floating car sharing services.
The new service will be offered under a new brand using CHJ Automotive’s SEV (Smart Electric Vehicle) as a basis for the fleet.
The signing is significant since CHJ Automotive, which was founded by Li Xiang, founder of Chinese internet vertical portal Autohom.com, has yet to build a sing car.
CHJ Automotive plans to create a new smart mobility service platform dedicated to this service where users can register, find, lock and unlock, pay for a vehicle and consult service all through a smart phone APP. Operators can monitor vehicle conditions in real time to manage and charge the vehicles as needed through data mining and cloud computing features from the platform.
The SEV is a two-seater smart electric transportation tool for short distance travel based on Europe’s L6e (light four-wheel vehicle) standards. Four of these vehicles can be parked in a standard parking space and is ideal for mobility needs in European cities such as Paris which often have tight streets. Its flexible battery charging/swapping capability and smart connected system provides rental operators with efficiency. It is equipped with two sets of removable battery packs for charging or swapping and 4G connectivity that help transmit vehicle operation and user behavior data to the cloud. The operating team will provide timely battery swaps when electricity runs low so that sharing efficiency can be optimized.
“In order to improve the environment, various European countries are actively promoting car sharing and electric vehicles no doubt offer the best solution,” said Kevin Shen, co-founder and president of CHJ Automotive. “But governments are often pressed by the time and cost of constructing new or renovating existing charging facilities in old town areas of European cities. Our SEV’s flexible charging and swapping model and connectivity capabilities plus our smart mobility platform will offer a new solution to resolve this problem. For CHJ Automotive, this is an important step for our efforts in advancing smart mobility.”
The service is expected to go into operation in the first half of 2018, covering three key regions of Paris including its city center and the Paris Disney area. The SEV will go through L6e type approval in Europe as well as third-party battery and safety testing in France.
Clem was established in 2010 as a leading comprehensive service provider of car and e-bike time-share rental, charging pod administration and P2P car sharing in France with services covering Paris and Philadelphia and pending in Hong Kong and Hangzhou.
CHJ Automotive is currently building a smart factory in Changzhou, Jiangsu Province with annual production capacity of 300,000 units.