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Electric cars in China

Chinese startup buys automaker for shortcut to EV production

Purchase of Lifan Motors gives CHJ a manufacturing license and overseas footing

A Lifan electric vehicle on display at the Beijing motor show in May. The Chongqing-based company sold 130,000 gasoline and new-energy vehicles in 2017. (Photo by Shunsuke Tabeta)

SHENZHEN -- Chinese electric car startup CHJ Automotive will acquire Chongqing-based automaker Lifan Motors, shifting from an earlier plan to outsource production to the company.

With China moving to curb automobile production capacity in the country, electric car startups face difficulty obtaining a license for production. Many startups are outsourcing production or acquiring licensed manufacturers instead.

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