UPDATES, April 11, 2012: Since this article was published on March 30, we've received the following updates:

  • This morning, Mission Valley Ford received a truckload of 10 Think City vehicles from the Indiana factory, though most are already spoken for;
  • Sales and service are only available in the San Jose area; Bob Garzee is working on the LA area, but other areas are not supported at this time;
  • The San Jose price is now $22,300, not $22,500;
  • Think is offering a three-year, 36,000-mile warranty; and
  • Cars can potentially be shipped from the Indiana factory to other locations.

In retrospect, it may be that a 10-year-old design for a plastic-bodied two-seat electric minicar was not what the U.S. market wanted.

Especially at a list price of $35,495, higher than that of a brand-new 2011 Nissan Leaf, which had twice as many seats, twice as many doors, a longer range, and a known brand name.

But now's your chance to own a new 2011 Think City minicar for less.

A lot less.

There are roughly 150 brand-new cars for sale nationwide, at a price of $22,300 $22,500.

The 2011 Think City is eligible both for a $7,500 Federal income-tax credit and a $2,500 California purchase rebate, bringing the post-incentive cost down to $12,500.

As a zero-emission vehicle, the City is also eligible to use high-occupancy vehicle lanes with just a single occupant in California and other jurisdictions.

The cars are being liquidated following the bankruptcy of Think Global last June, and the shutdown of Think's U.S. assembly plant located in a former RV plant in Elkhart, Indiana.

PHOTO GALLERY: Think Assembly Plant Tour, Indiana (March 2011)

Think now has a new owner, Russian lumber baron Boris Zingarevich, who was also the majority shareholder in Ener1, which had a stake in Think. Ener1--which owned Think's battery supplier, EnerDel--followed Think into bankruptcy in January.

Think City assembly plant, Elkhart, Indiana, Jan 2011

Think City assembly plant, Elkhart, Indiana, Jan 2011

In California, the liquidated 2011 Think Citys are being sold by Jerry Pohorsky and Bob Garzee. Yesterday, the two men received a demonstration Think City in black (cars are also available in red and blue).

Thus far, they say, more than a dozen Californians have expressed interest in purchasing a Think.

They'll have the car on display and available for test drives this weekend at Mission Valley Ford in San Jose, California, starting at 10 am. Any sales will be transacted through that dealer.

While their demonstrator is for sale as well, Pohorsky says they intend to keep it for several days at least before selling it, to let interested buyers test it out in real-world driving.

He was told that the bulk of the unsold Think Citys remain in Indiana. Any cars sold will be shipped to dealers who can officially sell the vehicles or to other destinations by arrangement.

Think City assembly plant, Elkhart, Indiana, Jan 2011

Think City assembly plant, Elkhart, Indiana, Jan 2011

CAUTION: Buying cars from a closed automaker is a high-risk undertaking, and while Pohorsky says they come with a warranty, it's unclear that claims will be accepted into the future.

The few hundred Saab 9-5 sedans left on sale after Saab closed were sold with no warranty at all--although a small two-seat electric car is mechanically much simpler than a large luxury sedan, making the Think potentially easier to service and repair.

Note that Garzee and Pohorsky are only selling the Thinks in California.

In other areas, the liquidator will have contracted with other people or companies to sell them.

If the U.S. arm of Think goes back into production, the two men plan to distribute the cars for fleet sales. Through his company, Synergy EV Financial, Garzee offers both support services and financing for fleet sales.

For serious buyers only, Garzee can be contacted at 408-500-1740, and Pohorsky at 408-464-0711. Mission Valley Ford can be reached at 408-933-2300; ask for Jeff Speno.


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