In a deal rumored to be worth $55.1 million, EV Technology Group has agreed to purchase an additional 50% of MOKE International, which will increase its stake to 67.6% of the company. The deal is aimed at rapidly expanding MOKE International’s reach and producing and supplying more of its iconic classic MOKE-inspired electric vehicles.
The terms of the deal retain an option for: EVT group to acquire the rest of MOKE International, bringing ownership to 100%.
EVT Group is an electric vehicle company whose mission is to “bring iconic brands into the booming EV revolution”.
In this case, it was aimed at MOKE International, the trademark holder of the original MOKE name.
For those too young to remember (me included), MOKE’s were Jeep-esque British cars built in the 1960s. About 50,000 of the vehicles were produced, eventually developing a cult following around the fun little open top rides.
The vehicle design has since been reworked several times, including by a handful of companies with various MOKE trademark claims.
MOKE International recently decided to go all-electric with its MOKEs, ceasing production of gas-powered versions in favor of the cleaner and quieter alternative.
As MOKE International CEO Isobel Dando explained:
MOKE going electric ensures the appeal of one of Britain’s most beloved brands for many generations to come. MOKE’s marriage of outdoor fun, personality and thrills will only be enhanced by the performance and quiet operation of an electric powertrain. We are proud to write a new chapter in one of the most beloved stories of British car folklore.
The new electric MOKE, which goes on sale this summer, has a long pre-order list in the UK and France, two of the largest markets for the original MOKE.
The vehicle has a top speed of 80 km/h (50 mph) and a range of 120 km (75 miles). A four-hour charge is possible from a Level 2 charger. The rear-wheel drive vehicle is equipped with a 10.5 kW electric motor with a peak power of 33 kW.
The launch edition of the electric MOKE costs £34,980 (about US$41,920), making this British-built EV one of the more expensive options on the market.
The cars may be pricey, but there’s apparently an audience for them. And EVT Group wants to grow that audience even further.
As CEO of EVT Group Wouter Witvoet explained:
The investment in MIL is very close to my heart. I first became interested in MOKE International when I tried to rent the vehicle in the South of France – I quickly discovered the joy of driving this vehicle in beautiful locations – but also the commercial opportunities given the high demand for this iconic brand , in relation to delivery.
EV Technology Group’s mission is to breathe new life into iconic brands and rediscover the joy of driving in an electric age. This applies very well to MOKE International as it is the perfect start for EV Technology Group’s strategy to acquire brands with a loyal following and significant brand value. I look forward to helping the company expand as it enters new markets, especially in the US. MIL has a great future and EV Technology Group has the capabilities to support it every step of the way.
MOKE International also claims on her website that it plans to ship its electric MOKEs to the US in October of this year.
That expansion of the US market should prove interesting, especially since an outfit known as MOKE America sells all of its own electric MOKEs for a still staggering but somewhat easier-to-digest US$21,975. That’s about half the price of the UK version.
MOKE America also claims to produce its MOKEs locally, meaning the two companies could set the stage for a MOKE on MOKE showdown.
However, the US version of MOKE America is a different type of vehicle, known locally as a Low-Speed Vehicle or LSV. These are vehicles with a speed limit of 25 mph that are not technically classified as cars. As a result, they can pass much less strict regulations, but are limited to lower speeds and smaller roads.
Would you pay twice as much for a MOKE that goes twice as fast? Let’s hear your thoughts in the comment section below.
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