Russia’s second (or first?) richest man is spearheading an effort to produce Russia’s first hybrid electric car. Mikhail Prokhorov’s Onexim Group and Russian truckmaker Yarovit is in a joint venture in which Onexim has poured 150 million Euros in, and the JV is expecting to roll out three prototype electric cars by December this year.
No specs have been revealed yet but the company claims that the new car will weigh about a third as much as the smallest cars produced now and will be priced between 300k to 450k rubles which is between RM33k to RM50k.
The Russian government is of course supporting Prokhorov as they want to wean the country off its fossil fuel dependency. Russia is the world’s biggest energy producer. However it is far from having an infrastructure that can support electric cars.
An IFC Metropol analyst also said that Russians are not used to a light car, given the number of car accidents in the country. According to the analyst, he doesn’t see a ‘real application’ for the cars produced by this project at the moment.
The JV intends to roll out the first cars in mid 2012.