Turkey's indigenous car presented to public
The prototype of Turkey's first indigenous electric car was unveiled on Dec. 26.
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan thanked the creators of the prototype, "a professional team focused only on the task."
"Today we witness Turkey's 60-year-old dream come true," Erdoğan said at a ceremony held in Kocaeli's Gebze district.
"Our dream was to have a car produced by national technologies that will make a name for us in the world. We were looking for 'bravehearts' to do this, and now we have them," he added.
Erdoğan said that the factory will be built on a 1-million-square-meter land that belongs to the Turkish military in Bursa's Gemlik district.
"Today I'm the first person to place a pre-order for Turkey's car," he added.
Erdoğan stressed Turkey will deter all efforts to hinder the production of its own car.
“They managed to hinder the production of Devrim [Turkey's first indigenous car] but they will not be able to hinder this automobile," he added.
Turkey first attempted to produce its own car in 1961, the Devrim (Revolution), but it never made it past the prototype stage.
Erdoğan placed an advance order for the car and later sat behind the wheel of one of the cars.
The two models unveiled on Dec. 27 are in the colors red and white, to signify the Turkish flag.
'The car to be produced in 2022'
The car has been designed as a smart device compatible with Internet of Things, said Gürcan Karakaş, the CEO of Turkey's Automobile Initiative Group (TOGG), adding they plan the car to be on the streets in 2022.
"The fully electric car is expected to have two engine configurations: 200 horsepower or 400 horsepower", said Karakaş.
"Production facilities to be completed in 2021 and first car to be produced in 2022", Karakaş noted.
The car will have a range of up to 500 km and locally produced Lithium-ion battery chargeable to 80 percent in less than 30 minutes, according to reports.
"A total of TL 22 billion ($3.7 billion) will be invested in the project in 15 years", says Rıfat Hisarcıklıoğlu, the head of the Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey (TOBB).
Production facilities will be in Bursa
Meanwhile, production facilities for Turkey's first indigenous automobile -- which also happens to be electric -- will open in the country's west under a presidential decree.
According to the decree published in the Official Gazette on Dec. 27 with President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's signature, the plant will be set up in Bursa province with project-based government assistance.
It is expected to employ some 4,323 people, including 300 qualified personnel.
The electric car will be produced in five models and 175,000 in a year.
In June 2018, five Turkish industry giants; Anadolu Group, BMC, Kok Group, Turkcell and Zorlu Holding as well as an umbrella organization, the Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey, joined hands to create an indigenous car.
Turkey has mobilized 750 million Turkish liras (over $126 million) to fund innovation and regional development, according to the country's industry and technology minister.
The electric car will have five models with 175,000 units produced in a year.