Barack Obama made a special trip to visit the headquarters of Smith Electric Vehicles US Corporation (Smith US) in Kansas City, Missouri, where he met with the plant’s workers and their families.
The President said: “I just had a chance to get a tour and saw some of the battery-powered trucks that you’re manufacturing. I had a chance to talk to some of the folks who build them.
“But the reason I’m here today is because, at this plant, you’re doing more than just building new vehicles. You are helping to fight our way through a vicious recession and you are building the economy of America’s future.”
Barack Obama also announced that the plant had recently employed more worker as it continues to increase production of its Smith Newton all-electric truck.
Designed for urban operations, the Newton has a top speed of 50mph, a range of up to 100 miles on a full battery charge and payload capabilities of up to 16,000lbs (7,500kg).
Smith US is an associate company of Smith Electric Vehicles UK (Smith UK), which was founded in 1920 and is longest established electric vehicle manufacturer in the world. Based in Tyne & Wear, the company produces the world’s largest range of electric commercial vehicles (vans and trucks), in the Smith Edison van and minibus (electric Ford Transit) and the Smith Newton truck. Hundreds of these electric vehicles are now in service in the UK, Ireland, Netherlands, France, Hong Kong and Southern China.