April 10, 2017 / 5:04 AM / 7 months ago

China's Changan forms electric car JV with local startup Nio

BEIJING, April 10 (Reuters) - China’s fourth-largest automaker Chongqing Changan Automobile Co Ltd and Nio, an electric car startup formerly known as NextEV, will form a joint venture to cooperate on researching and selling electric cars, Nio said on Sunday.

China is aggressively promoting electric cars to combat urban smog and push the industry to the forefront of automotive technology, loosening rules in recent years to allow startups like Nio to flood the industry and challenge established Chinese automakers.

The Changan-Nio JV will focus on research, sales and service for green cars, although under a broader partnership the two sides will also share resources related to smart vehicle technology, manufacturing and other areas, according to a statement from Nio.

Financial terms of the partnership were not disclosed.

A Changan spokesman said the company had no further information to release regarding the partnership.

Chinese tech giant Tencent Holdings Ltd was an early backer of Nio, and rival internet company Baidu Inc last month said it was leading a new round of investment into the startup.

Nio has also partnered with Anhui Jianghuai Automobile Group Corp Ltd to produce electric vehicles on a contract basis. (Reporting by Jake Spring)

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