Yesterday, while discussing their 2008 financial numbers, Paris-based Valeo announced their partnership with Michelin to develop and produce pure electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles.

Michelin, from central France (Clermont-Ferrand), will provide their Active Wheel technology, which will make obsolete the gearbox, clutch, transmission shift, universal joint and anti-roll bar. Valeo will develop the engine and battery cooling systems and climate control, among other things. Both companies are looking for a third partner, hopefully an established automaker, one that will help them create a "French Champion" electric vehicle.

Well, it doesn't necessarily have to be FRENCH...

"We may team up with a French firm or it may be a Germany company," said Valeo CEO Thierry Morin.