According to Reuters News Service, the Malaysian automaker Proton Holdings is close to signing a deal with battery developer Detroit Electric.  The deal includes a possible electric vehicle produced as a joint venture between the two companies.  Detroit Electric would become the manufacturer of the vehicle.

The deal is reportedly estimated at $331 million dollars and would make Proton Holdings the vehicle supplier and Detroit Electric would become the battery supplier for the EV.  At this time there are no details about the joint EV vehicle that would be produced.  However, it is expected to be sold in Malysia.

Last year, Detroit Electric hinted at a possible future in EVs.  Stating they would be testing EVs by the end of 2009 and they would produce their own vehicles.  If an agreement is reached, Proton Holdings will now supply vehicle to Detroit Electric.

Despite the name, Detroit Electric is a Dutch company, but was once an American company.  From 1915 until 1939, Detroit Electric made electric cars here in the U.S.  Detroit Electric is head by former Lotus Executive Albert Lam.  Proton Holdings is Malaysia's national auto company and currently owns Lotus.

Source:  Reuters