In a ceremony attended by local government officials, business associates and employees, AMP Electric Vehicles
turned over the keys to the first of 1,000 all electric SUVs it will deliver to Iceland as part of a ground breaking partnership.
AMP signed a deal last fall with Northern Electric Lights, a private company in Iceland. Under a letter of Intent, NLE has committed to buy the SUVs from AMP over the next five years. This marks the largest single order for the startup, and the first time the company has converted vehicles for an overseas buyer.
"Northern Lights Energy has been a visionary in the application and advantages of electric driven SUVs. We are extremely pleased to be working closely with NLE in the first large scale deployment of electric SUVs. This agreement represents a major advancement in transportation from conventional combustion engines and hybrid/extended range vehicles into effective SUV-sized 100 percent electric vehicles," said AMP president and CEO Steve Burns.
One in four vehicle purchases in the US are SUVs. The company is working to capture less than 1 percent of the SUV market. Currently AMP specializes in converting three vehicles to 100-percent electric: the Chevrolet Equinox, Saturn Sky and Pontiac Solstice. AMP manufactures and installs state-of-the-art, all-electric, high performance engines and transmissions for the vehicles.
Burns said Iceland is the perfect place to experiment with introducing a large number of all electric SUVs into the market (the country only has 200,000 drivers). SUVs are very popular in the Northern European Island, which has some rugged terrain. Gas is expensive, up to $8 U.S. per gallon, because it's all imported. Electricity is cheap and in the last few decades the government has made it a priority to develop the country's renewable hydropower and geothermal power sources.
In addition most of the country's densely packed population lives in or near the capital, making the average commute about 30 miles.
The potentially $100 million deal will set AMP as a leading SUV supplier, AMP CEO James Taylor said. The agreement allows for expansion into the Nordic region including Finland, Sweden, Norway, Denmark and the Faroe Islands. Initially AMP will supply the Chevy Equinox and Mercedes Benz ML EV.
Writer: Feoshia Henderson
Source: AMP Electric Vehicles
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