* Electric hybrid Volt to be launched in India in Q4 of 2010
* GM-SAIC venture to start with small trucks in end-2011
(Adds details, background)
MUMBAI, May 27 (Reuters) - General Motors [GM.UL] will develop electric car technology for the Indian market in its home town of Detroit, after ending a partnership with Indian firm Reva, the head of its operations in the country said.
Thursday's announcement follows Indian utility vehicles maker Mahindra & Mahindra's MAHM.BO deal on Wednesday to acquire a 55 percent stake in Reva Electric Car Company. [ID:nSGE64P04O]
GM India, which had originally planned to launch an electric version of the Chevrolet Spark, will now offer the hybrid electric vehicle Chevrolet Volt in the fourth quarter of 2010, after its global launch in November, Karl Slym said.
Carmakers worldwide are investing large sums in electric vehicles as they seek to meet ever-tighter regulations for emissions and struggle to pull themselves out of a savage industry downturn.
In January GM announced it would set up a $246 million facility to build electric motors to power hybrids and possibly pure electric vehicles. [ID:nN26115316]
India’s Reva had entered into an agreement with General Motors India last year to develop electric cars in the country, including an electric version of the Chevrolet Spark.
“Now with Reva changing its ownership we saw no particular value in doing this experiment,” Slym said.
Slym said the decision to end the agreement with Reva was taken around two months ago as GM had a parallel programme to develop electric vehicles globally.
He did not give a timeframe for the introduction of full-fledged electric vehicles in the Indian market.
General Motors' joint venture with China's SAIC 600104.SS would launch small commercial vehicles in India in late 2011 while passengers cars from the venture will follow a year later, Slym said.
The joint venture between the two companies was announced late last year and was formed in February this year, he added. (Reporting by Janaki Krishnan; Editing by Ranjit Gangadharan and Jon Loades-Carter)
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