Coda Electric Car Returns From Dead As Mullen 700e At LA Auto Show


Mullen 700e

Mullen 700e

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The Coda Sedan electric car didn't make much of an impression the first time around, but now it's back.

Set to debut this week at the 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show, the Mullen 700e is a virtually unchanged version of the troubled Coda.

RELATED: 2012 Coda Sedan: First Drive

The Mullen Motor Company--which in the past tried to market an electric sports car--plans to pick up where Coda left off with its bankruptcy in May 2013, according to a report from Autoblog Green (via Transport Evolved).

After the bankruptcy, a firm called Coda Cars tried to make a go of selling leftovers--either complete unsold cars are "glider" rolling chassis without powertrains.

2012 Coda Sedan

2012 Coda Sedan

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The head of Coda Cars--Rick Curtis--is now president of Mullen Consolidated, the new corporate entity that will oversee the relaunch.

Images released so far show no significant exterior changes other than badging, and Mullen's website advertises the 700e as having the same 31-kilowatt-hour battery capacity as the Coda Sedan.

However range has apparently jumped from 125 miles to 185 miles. Production cars will reportedly get a larger pack--perhaps of 50-kWh capacity--which would explain the change.

ALSO SEE: So What's A Brand-New (Defunct) Coda Sedan Electric Car Worth?

Increased range likely won't be enough to reverse this electric car's bad fortune.

When we test drove a Coda in 2012, we found a long list of irregularities, including abrupt power transitions, ergonomic faults, and some questionable workmanship.

Many of these details could potentially have been addressed during a longer development period, but so far its unclear whether Mullen plans to implement any fixes.

Those models also had relatively simple safety equipment--and the Coda Sedan received dismal two-star frontal crash-test rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

2012 Coda Sedan

2012 Coda Sedan

Enlarge Photo
Even if those issues can be addressed, the Mullen/Coda is still based on a design that was already old when it first launched.

While this car has  stood still, the competition hasn't. There are now many more electric-car models for buyers to choose from.

In other words, don't expect this second attempt to be any more successful than the first.

For more from the 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show, head over to our news page for the latest updates.

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