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SAIC auto says it will manufacture 10,000 hybrid cars by 2010

Shanghai. November 19 ( ¨CShanghai Automotive Industry Corporation (SAIC) plans to produce more than 10,000 hybrid vehicles by 2010, a company official said.

"SAIC aims to start volume production of hybrids by 2008 and that capacity will be increased to 10,000 units two years later,¡± said Wang Dazong, SAIC's new vice president.

AIC chairman Hu Maoyuan said earlier that SAIC had already produced two dozen EV and hybrid concept vehicles ready for the Olympics next year.

Last week, Shanghai Automobile displayed four new energy or alternative energy vehicle model on the 9th Bibendum new energy vehicle race in Shanghai. The models include a fuel battery-powered sedan and a hybrid sedan both brand-named ¡°Shanghai¡±, a fuel battery-powered Passat sedan and a hybrid bus. More than 80 models of new energy sedans, buses, trucks and bicycles joined the race.

Automobile production in China is growing so rapidly that it is set to replace the U.S. the world's largest market in the next ten year. However it also raises some environmental concern. Automakers are now pumping investments to develop hybrids to ease environment pressure and reduce oil consumption.

Chery has also just announced that more than fifty percent vehicles produced by Chery will be equipped with hybrid systems by 2010 and half of those vehicles will be powered by new energy.

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