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low-interest loans

  • Elio Motors 84 mpg 3-Wheeler [Image: Elio Motors]

    Elio Motos hopes a U.S. Department of Energy loan will provide the funding it needs.

  • Fisker Karma aluminum spaceframe
    DoE Program That Funded Tesla, Fisker To Restart; Alcoa In Line For Loan?

    It's baaaaaaaaack. The U.S. Department of Energy's $25 billion low-interest loan program may be about to start awarding new loans. The DoE's Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing (ATVM) program endured intense political criticism for funding not only electric-car maker Tesla Motors but also...

  • Technician secures cover on ithium-ion battery pack at Nissan plant in Smyrna, Tennessee
    DoE Reboots Advanced Auto-Tech Loan Program That Funded Ford, Nissan, Tesla, Fisker

    It's baaaaaaaaaaaack. U.S. Department of Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz announced yesterday that the DoE had revised and updated its Advanced-Technology Vehicle Manufacturing (ATVM) program, which offers low-interest loans to carmakers and their suppliers. Any new loans, according to a Detroit News...

  • 2012 Fisker Karma during road test, Los Angeles, Feb 2012
    Fisker Assets Sold For $149 Million To Wanxiang, Chinese Parts Maker

    The assets of bankrupt Fisker Automotive were sold to Wanxiang America at the close of an auction in Delaware bankruptcy court that lasted more than two days and lasted 19 rounds. Bloomberg reports that the Chinese company paid a total of $149.2 million for the company, or six times the price of...

  • 2013 Nissan Leaf, Nashville area test drive, April 2013
    U.S.-Made 2013 Nissan Leaf Has Only 15 Percent Local Content; Here's Why

    The 2013 Nissan Leaf electric car is assembled in Smyrna, Tennessee, for North American sales. In fact, Nissan got a low-interest loan for $1.6 billion from the U.S. Department of Energy to make that possible. So why does every 2013 Leaf carry a window sticker saying that its U.S. and Canadian...

  • 2009 Fisker Karma prototype
    Energy Department To Sell Its Fisker Loan: Kickstarter, Anyone?

    That sound you heard yesterday was the other shoe dropping. The U.S. Department of Energy is offering its loan to Fisker Automotive for sale to the highest bidder, with a remaining face value of $164 million. The DoE did the same a few weeks ago with a much smaller loan--$45 million--to Vehicle...

  • 2009 Fisker Karma prototype

    The fate of Fisker Automotive has been hanging for months, but now an offer for the company has been "signed" and is "on the table." At least that's the word from Ingo Voigt, who with Fritz Nol is one of a pair of German investors who want to buy the company. "I am proud to tell you that we just sent our detailed offer including a signed LOI and short presentation of our restructing plan to the DoE on fax and mail," says a post by Voight yesterday on Facebook. "Now it's time to pray!" he concludes. "LOI" refers to "letter of intent," the official document offering to buy the company. The...

  • VPG MV-1
    AM General Buys VPG, Defunct Natural-Gas Handicapped Van Maker

    Less than a year ago, Vehicle Production Group seemed a success: The startup maker had built 2,500 MV-1 handicapped vans in a year, about one-quarter of them powered by natural gas. But this past April, VPG shut down due to a cash crunch that meant it couldn't make payroll. Now, its $50 million...

  • 'Revenge of the Electric Car' premiere: Elon Musk arrives in a Tesla Roadster
    Tesla Repays $465-Million DoE Loan, Chrysler Bites Back At Claim

    Ah, politics. Yesterday, Tesla paid off the balance of its U.S. government loan, using proceeds from its $1 billion-plus offering of stock and warrants last week, as CEO Elon Musk had said Monday it would in a tweet. The amount settled yesterday was $451.8 million, following installments paid by...

  • Battery pack assembly at Nissan plant in Smyrna, Tennessee
    How Are Electric-Car Batteries Made? Photos From Nissan's New Plant

    Making a battery for an electric car is more like assembling microelectronics than the kind of auto-plant scenes we think of, involving huge steel stamping presses and battalions of automated welding robots. Last month, in addition to driving a 2013 Nissan Leaf through the Tennessee countryside, we...

  • Elon Musk signs new 2013 Tesla Model S at Tesla Store opening, Austin, Texas [photo: John Griswell]
    Can Tesla Raise More Than $1 Billion On Soaring Stock Price?

    Investors in startup electric-car maker Tesla Motors [NSDQ:TSLA] have had quite the wild ride lately. Following its first-ever profitable quarter, with its share price soaring above $80, Tesla announced last Wednesday that it would issue new stock and warrants. Now, Tesla has quietly increased its...

  • VPG MV-1
    VPG Shuts Down; Startup Van Maker Was Backed By DoE Loans

    While Tesla Motors [NSDQ:TSLA] is on a roll--with a rave review from Consumer Reports and a profitable quarter--other startup automakers aren't faring so well. And now another small car company that received low-interest loans from the U.S. Department of Energy is in trouble and has halted...

  • Henrik Fisker

    Fisker Automotive CEO Tony Posawatz didn't attend yesterday's House committee hearing on the company's loan from the U.S. Department of Energy. He's out desperately seeking saviors to avert bankruptcy for the struggling startup electric-car maker, but he still may have had the better day. The title of the hearing, Green Energy Oversight: Examining the Department of Energy's Bad Bet on Fisker Automotive, promised rough sledding for the five witnesses called to testify. Subsidizing Bieber, DiCaprio And Representative Darryl Issa [R-CA], who heads the House of Representatives panel on Economic...

  • Henrik Fisker
    Fisker Misses DoE Loan Payment; House Hearing Tomorrow

    The fortunes of the two highest-profile electric-car startups couldn't be diverging more starkly today. Yesterday, Fisker Automotive failed to make a payment of $10 million on the $192 million of low-interest loan funds it received from the U.S. Department of Energy. And tomorrow company executives...

  • Henrik Fisker
    Is Fisker The Most Tragic VC-Backed Debacle In Recent History?

    In January 2005, legendary car designer Henrik Fisker founded a company to bring innovative new thinking to the automobile industry. Between that date and today, Fisker Automotive would create perhaps the most beautiful car ever made, raise almost $1.4 billion dollars from investors as diverse as...

  • Tesla Model S
    Tesla Will Repay Its Energy Department Loans By 2017, It Says

    What a difference a few years makes. Startup electric-car maker Tesla Motors [NSDQ:TSLA] said it will repay its $465 million in low-interest loans from the U.S. Department of Energy five years earlier than originally scheduled. The news came yesterday in the company's annual report. Sourcing Tesla...

  • 2013 Nissan Leaf Spy Shots
    Nissan Builds First Lithium-Ion Cells For 2013 Leaf Electric Car (Video)

    Just two years after the first Nissan Leaf was sold in the U.S., Nissan said today it has opened a plant in Smyrna, Tennessee, to fabricate lithium-ion cells for electric-car batteries. The first cells built at the plant have completed the necessary aging process, and can now be charged for the...

  • 2012 Fisker Karma in Costco parking lot, Santa Monica, California [photo: Chris Williams]
    Will Fisker Ask For Rest Of Its Stalled DoE Low-Interest Loan?

    For Fisker Automotive these days, no news is probably good news. Its latest CEO, Tony Posawatz, has been at the helm for four months now. And Fisker is putting all its efforts toward developing and producing its next model, the Atlantic mid-size sport sedan, by late 2014. In a recent Fox News...

  • XP Technology concept vehicle

    Oh, those DoE loans. They arose in the recent U.S. presidential debate--not just once or twice, but three times--and continue to generate debate. So here's more fuel for the fire: A company rejected three years ago for loans is now suing the DoE. Its proposed product? An inflatable electric car. Two applications by XP Technology for low-interest loans of $25 million and $45 million under the DoE's advanced technology vehicle manufacturing program were rejected in August 2009. At the time, XP issued a press release saying it was "extremely disappointed," and then vanished from sight. Its...

  • 2012 Coda Sedans on assembly line, Benicia, California, March 2012
    Coda Abandons Plan To Build Its Battery Cells In U.S.

    We breathed a sigh of relief when Coda announced it had started production of its electric Sedan earlier this month. Then, we positively jumped for joy when little over a week later, the first customers started taking delivery of their new 2012 Coda Sedans. It had certainly been a long time coming...

  • Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk at the wheel of a Tesla Roadster
    Elon Musk: Daimler Saved Tesla, DoE Loans A Bad Idea

    In the toughest days of Tesla's early years, CEO Elon Musk said on film, he wired $3 million of his personal fortune to the company so it could make payroll. Now the always-quotable CEO is downplaying the effect the $465 million in U.S. Department of Energy low-interest loan guarantees it received...

  • Carbon Motors E7
    DoE Dings Loans For Startup Carbon Motors' Police Cruisers

    Log one more startup car company the U.S. Department of Energy has declined to fund. The latest entry on the lengthening list that includes Virtual Vehicles Co. (renamed NextCar), Aptera Motors, and Bright Automotive is Carbon Motors of Connersville, Indiana. The five-year-old startup proposed to...

  • Sergio Marchionne
    Chrysler Abandons Quest For Energy Dept Low-Interest Loans

    The U.S. Department of Energy hasn't made any new loans under its Advanced Technology Vehicle Program in well over a year. At its current rate, it may never do so. The latest company to walk away from applications for low-interest loans from the $25 billion DoE program is Chrysler. This afternoon...

  • 2012 Fisker Karma
    Fisker Loan Woes: Bump In The Road, Or A Big Pothole?

    On Monday, we told you that California-based Fisker Automotive had announced it was laying off employees and contractors after it missed deadlines associated with its $529 million low-interest loans from the U.S. Department of Energy. But while Fisker’s cull of employees has totaled at least...

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