Faraday Future announced this morning a planned first phase investment of $1 billion in a U.S. manufacturing facility, which should be announced in the “coming weeks”. The announcement comes just a week after our profile on the company, which linked the firm to the deep pocket Chinese technology company, LeTV. The company has been considering several locations for the factory including California, Georgia, Louisiana, and Nevada.

Nick Sampson, senior vice president of Faraday Future, on the announcement:

“We are very excited to make our $1 billion investment in U.S. manufacturing — and this is just phase one. Selecting the right location for the future FF manufacturing facility is critical to our overall goals. Producing our forward-looking and fully-connected electric vehicles not only requires the latest technology, but the right community partner.”

Sampson is a former Director of Vehicle & Chassis Engineering at Tesla Motors and he is among several former Tesla employees now working for Faraday Future, also called FF.

He is officially listed as the highest ranking executive in the company and FF doesn’t publicly disclose its CEO or any investors, but as mentioned in last week’s piece, in documents filed for incorporation in California the company names Chaoying Deng as CEO. Deng is a Director at Le Vision Pictures, which is a subsidiary of LeTV.

Which leads us to believe FF is one of several large scale efforts from LeTV to enter the electric vehicle market.

Here’s what the company is saying about its secretive new entry in the electric car market:

  • It will have 15 percent higher specific energy than a Tesla Model S 85 kW-hr pack. That works out to 98 kW-hr.
  • It’s a multi-cell solution, like Tesla’s.
  • The company is aiming for the highest energy density and specific energy vehicle on the market.
  • It will be single cell, thermal-runaway fault tolerant (will not propagate to other cells)
  • Single or groups of cells can be replaced.
  • Module designed for mass production, utilizing new processes and technologies
  • Same battery design to be used in all vehicles with only a change in capacity (no change in voltage)
  • The higher energy density allows for larger crumple zones than on the Tesla Model S.

They are aiming to bring to market their first vehicle in 2017.

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