Electric car start-up Karma has been accused of stealing a rival’s plans.

On August 7th Karma, an electric car start-up, was accused of stealing a model plan from a company it was discussing a joint venture with, according tomedia reports. Michigan-based VLF Automotive filed a lawsuit in California Superior Court in June seeking at least $18.5 million in damages. VLF was co-founded by Bob Lutz, a former GM executive.

Electric car start-up Karma has been accused of stealing a rival's plans.

VLF claims that in the fall of 2019 it shared with Karma its luxury Hummer plan as part of a proposed partnership to produce the model in the Chinese market, but Karma tried to roll it out of the deal.

Despite the nondisclosure agreement, Karma CHIEF executive Lance Zhou secretly contacted the US company’s manufacturing partners about the design in an attempt to bring the Hummer electric car to the Chinese market on its own, VLF said.

Founded in 2014, Karma Automotive employs nearly 1,000 people worldwide and is committed to developing a corporate strategy of luxury design, high-tech, personalized and customer benefits, according to public records.