By on March 19, 2017

hk-h600

If you don’t remember Hybrid Kinetic Group, that’s because it nearly vanished from western news after promising to build a 1.5 billion dollar factory in Alabama for its $300,000 hybrid-electric. That factory, planned in 2009, ended up being unable to secure financing after receiving some state-sponsored help to get the ball rolling. It’s a similar story to what happened to a company, ran by the former CEO of China’s Brilliance Auto, in Mississippi and the contemporary situation with Faraday Future in Nevada. In the case of Hybrid Kinetic, the firm managed to secure some visas and financial aid from Alabama before pulling out of the United States in 2011 — presumably never to be heard from again.

However, earlier this month, HK made an appearance at the Geneva International Motor Show with a car that it now says it fully anticipates selling on the American market. The sedan is the result of a 68 million dollar deal with Italian design house Pininfarina to assist the Chinese company in producing a handsome and — more importantly — real electric luxury vehicle for the global marketplace. 

hk-h600-side

This car isn’t real, though. It’s a concept that is, according to the company, “85 to 90 percent” representative of a production model. The H600 is a hybrid luxury sports sedan using a microturbine generator as a range-extender and a claimed 0-62 mph speed of only 2.9 seconds. Power is rated, again by the company, at 600kW/804 hp while the lightweight aluminum chassis keeps the vehicle at a trim — for an battery pack laden EV — 4,123 pounds.

HK hasn’t given any further mechanical details and it’d be difficult to know what to trust anyway, but the car certainly looks lovely thanks to Pininfarina diversifying its client base.

As for the H600 entering production and heading to North America, HK board member Carter Yeung told Automotive News the company will make its cars in China after a trial production run at Pininfarina’s Italian plant. From there it will see a simultaneous launch in the U.S. and China between 2019 and 2020.

When asked about HK’s utter failure to deliver on the Alabama factory, Yeung responded “We’re always going to make mistakes. It’s how you recover from those that defines how this company will be run in the future.”

“A lot of Chinese companies over-promise and under-deliver. We’re going to be the opposite,” he said.

So far, so good.

hk-h600-rear

 

[Images: Hybrid Kinetic Group]

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33 Comments on “Another Chinese Company is ‘Planning to Sell’ an Electric Luxury Car in the U.S....”


  • avatar
    JimZ

    Let’s see, where have I seen that styling before.

    where, oh where… Oh yeah!

    https://www.astonmartin.com/en/cars/lagonda

  • avatar
    indi500fan

    Microturbine/hybrid was a “hot” concept (at least in the media) for the truck market years ago with an outfit called Wrightspeed. Anybody know how that’s coming along?

  • avatar
    OldManPants

    Rear looks like a stingy Lincoln.

    Door handles are très délicat. If the doors aren’t motorized they’re also bone stupid.

  • avatar
    Big Al from Oz

    Well it is inevitable the Chinese will build a car that the western world wants.

    I have predicted in the past the Chinese will produce a large chunk of EVs.

    This vehicle looks attractive. All the Chinese need to do is find quality and reliability.

    Oh, and decent names for their car companies and models.

    • 0 avatar
      jalop1991

      So, let me get this straight:

      China makes self-balancing electric two wheel personal standup mobility thingies that sell–SELL–for $79 on Ebay, and every one of them bursts into flames.

      Now China wants us to believe we should buy high end electric cars from them???

      Watch the drivers get lead or chemical poisoning from the finishing crap that leaches out of the seat covers.

      I’ll never buy a Chinese car. Fortunately, I don’t have to. I have plenty of established alternatives to choose from. Now get off my lawn.

      • 0 avatar
        John-95_Taurus_3.0_AX4N

        To be fair, there was a time Korean and even Japanese products/cars were looked at much the same way.

        I’m not trying to justify or defend Chinese cars, just saying there is historical precedent in that perceptions can be reversed, and the market can/will come around when the standards of product, reliability and build quality are met and/or exceeded.

        • 0 avatar
          jalop1991

          Agreed 100%.

          I grew up watching the hubris of the Big 3 pretty much destroy their world in 15 years, as they ignored Honda and Toyota coming on board.

          That being said, this is a whole different world than it was then–and we all know that China will destroy people (their own AND customers) and the environment to try to get to be a world economy player as fast as possible.

          It’s not easy pickings anymore in the auto world. The best possibility they have is electric cars. Of course, watch GM’s hubris get in the way of acknowledging Chinese competition…

          But I’m not buying an electric car, so it’s immaterial to me.

        • 0 avatar
          JimZ

          and when did the Japanese or Koreans put melamine in infant formula or pet food?

      • 0 avatar
        Big Al from Oz

        jalop1991,
        You are at least two and a half decades behind regarding the Chinese.

        The Chinese are manufacturing some good quality products.

        As I inferred in my statement, the Chinese will need to ensure quality is what we expect.

        You might not be fond of a particular country, which is a fair call. But don’t allow your views to cloud reality. Not liking a country or even a person has little to do with what they can achieve.

        Seems to me you fear the Chinese. Try respect. This way you can make better judgement.

        • 0 avatar
          jalop1991

          No, they’re capable of manufacturing some good quality products.

          But what they’re doing is lying, cheating, and stealing about it on a level that makes Wall Street look like kindergartners.

          They’re half a world away, and can much more easily get away with crap like poisoning dog food.

          Mainland Chinese manufacturing (I’m not talking Taiwan) is proven to do the same thing with its products that drug dealers do on the street–cut the product with poison to increase revenues.

          And they’re feeding the same type of market–the people who have to have more stuff, who think quantity beats quality, who would no more buy a $3000 high quality couch for the long term than they would cut off an arm. Instead, they want a $500 couch that sits well for ten minutes on the showroom floor then falls apart 6 months later–and the Chinese slave state that’s half a world away is happy to provide.

          And again, on top of that is the fact that an very well established, high quality auto infrastructure already exists. Unless they’re trying to sell the modern version of the Le Car or Yugo for $3995, they’ll never get away with selling a crappy made product. They’ll have to COMPETE in that established market, where people DO happily pay $75K for a Benz or Lexus that actually IS high quality.

          If the mainland Chinese think they can come in and sell into the $75K Lexus market and compete and make the kinds of money they demand by cutting corners, they have another thought coming. Hell, ask Hyundai.

          • 0 avatar
            05lgt

            I think you’re tarring an entire nation with one brush. A nation of 1.4 billion can have quite a few different moral compasses, corporate ethos, and quality levels. Citing bad things from china as an argument that they can’t ever make good cars is not a strong argument. Much as it pains me to agree with BAfO, there it is.

  • avatar
    TonyJZX

    The basketball logo and the name I dont care for but the design hits the spot for me… its a bit buick-lincoln but look what I found here:

    http://www.pininfarina.com/en/h600_by_pininfarina/

    Italian.

    renders

    flesh (of sorts)

    i dig it.

  • avatar
    jpolicke

    300 grand for a car from an unknown Chinese company. Yeah, sure.

  • avatar
    lexus94

    In many cases, the Chinese have moved past making cheap, knock-off derivatives. For instance, Haier appliances and OnePlus smartphones are the best that money can buy.

    Unfortunately, the same still can’t be said of their cars (Volvo doesn’t count – ownership =/= operation)…this particular example wielded the front end of a Maserati to a rear of a Lincoln, and stuck a Camry greenhouse in the middle.

    • 0 avatar
      jalop1991

      “For instance, Haier appliances and OnePlus smartphones are the best that money can buy.”

      Haier appliances?

      Sure. Right. Whatever.

      • 0 avatar
        indi500fan

        Haier makes those amazingly cheap dorm refrigerators and dehumidifiers that last about a year. And are difficult to dispose of afterwards unless you want to pay somebody to take them.

        • 0 avatar
          Big Al from Oz

          You’d be surprised what factories some highend products come from.

          • 0 avatar
            jalop1991

            “You’d be surprised what factories some highend products come from.”

            hehehehe We went shopping for a microwave oven, over the stove. We had a specific need in mind.

            We ended up at a high end kitchen appliance store, and found a Wolf ON SALE for $900.

            The next day I was browsing the internet, and found the exact same hardware under the Sharp name (remember, Sharp makes all the microwaves anyway) for a LIST price of $350.

            Wow, $700 for a label and some extra warranty from Wolf…

  • avatar
    OldManPants

    MOAR MOHOGONNY!

    media.al.com/live/photo/hk-motors-concept-carjpg-44c96c2a390b6bc5.jpg

  • avatar
    DeadWeight

    Suuuuuuure.

    Chinese Luxury EV Sedan priced at $300,000 USD to be produced soon.

    Suuuuuuuuurrrrrre Thing!

    Oh, OKAY!

  • avatar
    Tosh

    You had me at: “We’re always going to make mistakes.”

  • avatar
    doublechili

    Big picture: the existing automakers had a huge head start (like 100+ years in some cases) on the Chinese in producing cars powered by internal combustion engines. EVs? Different ballgame. The field was leveled for them, and I’m sure they intend to take full advantage.


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