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Global Electric Motorcars (GEM), a wholly owned subsidiary of Polaris Industries, is a U.S. manufacturer in the low-speed vehicle category, producing neighborhood electric vehicles (NEVs) since 1998 and has sold more than 46,000 GEM battery-electric vehicles worldwide as of April 2013. Until June 2011, GEM was owned by Chrysler Group.
The company was founded in 1992 by a team of ex-General Motors engineers from Livonia, Michigan, under the name Trans2.
The company was purchased by a group of North Dakota investors and was moved to Fargo, North Dakota. Global Electric Motorcars manufactured its first vehicle in April 1998, a 48-volt GEM car that accommodated two passengers and had a top speed of 20 mph. Less than two months later, a significant breakthrough occurred in the market as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) designated a new class of motor vehicle, the low-speed vehicle, also known as the Neighborhood Electric Vehicle (NEV). The low-speed vehicle class allowed GEM cars to be driven on public roads if they met certain safety criteria such as having safety belts, headlamps, windshield wipers, and safety glass. GEM cars always come equipped with these safety features, making them a benchmark in the industry.
GEM battery-electric vehicles are street legal in nearly all 50 states on public roads posted at 35 mph (56 km/h) or less. With a top speed of 25 mph (40 km/h) GEM cars have a range of up to 30 miles (48 km) on a charge. They are battery-electric, operate on a 72-volt battery system and plug into a standard 110-volt outlet for recharging, and fully recharge in six to eight hours.
There are currently six different models of GEM cars available primarily suited for intra-city use. GEM cars are used by local, state and national government agencies, resorts, master-planned communities, universities, medical and corporate campuses, as well as by sports teams, taxi-shuttle services and individual consumers.
- April 1998
- First GEM car produced in Fargo, North Dakota
- October 1998
- November 1998
- December 1998
- December 2000
- DaimlerChrysler Corporation acquires Global Electric Motorcars, LLC
- March 2004
- 2005 models begin production
- June 2005
- Global Electric Motorcars receives its ISO 9001 Certification
- January 2006
- April 2006
- September 2006
- December 2007
- Global Electric Motorcars celebrates its 10th Anniversary
- GEM eL XD first produced
- June 2009
- Global Electric Motorcars remains a wholly owned subsidiary of Chrysler Group LLC
- June 2010
- Global Electric Motorcars introduces the new Right Hand Drive GEM electric vehicle
- July 2011
- Global Electric Motorcars is sold to Polaris
Gemcar has produced over 45,000 ev's since 1998.
- Passenger Vehicles:
- GEM e2 NEV — A two-passenger vehicle
- GEM e4 NEV — A four-passenger vehicle
- GEM e6 NEV — A six-passenger vehicle
- Utility Vehicles:
- GEM eS NEV — A two-passenger vehicle with a 39" x 48" flat bed with and a 330 pound cargo capacity.
- GEM eL NEV — A two-passenger vehicle with a 70" x 48" flat bed with and a 700 pound cargo capacity.
- GEM eL XD NEV— An extra-duty heavier duty version of the GEM eL with a 70" x 48" flat bed with and a 1,100 pound cargo capacity.