Ecomotors announced yesterday a joint venture with a subsidiary of Chinese auto maker FAW Group, outlining plans to begin producing the opposed piston engines in 2015:
The joint venture will build a plant in China’s northern Shanxi province with the capacity to make 100,000 engines a year. The factory is expected to begin operating in the second half of next year.
This is great news for an engine that seems to have all of the right stuff to succeed, a good design, great tech specs and lots of high profile backers, like Bill Gates and Vinod Khosla, but, while everyone else is taking this press release at face value, I refer back to our earlier coverage of this engine and see we’ve noted other breaking news that made it appear things were almost ready to start, especially when they announced the development agreement with Navistar. That announcement was just over three years ago.
The Wall Street Journal also notes in the same article another deal in China with plans to produce 150,000 engines per year beginning in 2014.
I like this engine, it makes sense from an engineering perspective, but it will be interesting to see if this new announcement will result in any more engines produced than the last several times it showed up in the news.