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VIA Motors to bring electric vehicle lineup to LA Auto Show

Wed, 13 Nov 2013

Via Motors will be displaying its range of electric trucks at the upcoming LA Auto Show, and visitors will get the opportunity to try its VTRUX vehicle. Haven't heard of VIA Motors? It's an EV startup with a factory in Mexico that will outfit full-size GM pickups and vans with its own extended-range electric powertrain. The company has a range of trucks and vans in the pipeline, all based on GM vehicles, and last month it received a $20 million contract to supply electric trucks and vans to over 50 participating fleets.

At the heart of VIA Motors' vehicles is a 402-hp electric motor connected to a gear set, eliminating the need for a transmission. VIA Motors claims that it's one of the most powerful electric motors offered in consumer electric vehicles today, and promises that it'll deliver over 100 mpg-equivalent in normal everyday driving, with a fully-charged range of 40 miles.

Just a few weeks ago VIA Motors opened a high volume EV assembly facility in San Luis Potosi, Mexico, one which will assemble the planned range of vehicles.

"VIA's unique assembly system will be able to output two electric vehicles per hour and 10,000 vehicles per year. We are proud to be first to deploy this innovative assembly technology here in Mexico, to transform conventional vehicles into advanced, extended range electric vehicles" said Pablo Acedo, president of VIA Motors for Latin America.

VIA Motors
VIA Motors promises a whole range of pickups and vans based on popular GM models.

GM vehicles from its nearby factory in Silao, Mexico, will be transported to VIA Motors where unneeded gas powertrain components will be removed, and the vehicles will be fitted with an electric powertrains and software. The vehicles will cycle through eight different stations at the factory where the will be outfitted with EV components, before continuing on to the quality control facility where they are prepared for shipping. VIA Motors plans to market its plug-in EVs in the U.S. and Canada.

When will these plug-in electric vehicles go on sale? They're available for pre-order on VIA Motors' website right now, though a platform redesign at GM has delayed their actual delivery until sometime in 2014. But we're going to get our first close look at them at the upcoming LA Auto Show. Stay tuned!

About the LA Auto Show

The Los Angeles Auto Show has long served as a spotlight for "green" cars, and a popular place to unveil new hybrid and electric vehicles. We'll have photos, video and complete coverage of all the manufacturer reveals and top news from this year's LA Auto Show right here, so check back often.

By Jay Ramey