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SmashMouth 03-08-2012 08:59 AM

"Carbon Motors" soon to be defunct.
The police car of the future has hit a major bump in the road.
Carbon Motors announced Wednesday that the Department of Energy has informed the Indiana-based startup automaker that it is no longer considering its $310 million loan application to the Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing program.

The company planned to use the money to produce a purpose-built, fuel-efficient law enforcement vehicle called the E7 for police and homeland security use.
Carbon Motors spokesman Stacy Stephens tells that the company was blindsided by the decision after being engaged in positive discussions with the government agency for the past 30 months, having recently been told by officials that it was “the number one priority of the Department of Energy.”
When Energy Secretary Steven Chu visited Indianapolis on Monday, he told reporters that the department wanted to go forward with the loan but that it has “a responsibility to the taxpayers and they need to make sure it’s written in the statute that there's a reasonable chance of repayment,” according to WIBC radio.
Stephens says that the company has sourced over $200 million in private matching funds as part of the loan requirements and began constructing a new headquarters building in Connersville, Ind., where the car was to be manufactured at a former brownfield site, creating over 1,500 jobs.
The automaker’s CEO, William Santana Li, says his company is outraged by what it calls a “political decision in a highly charged, election-year environment,” caused by the fallout from the bankruptcy of Energy loan recipient Solyndra last fall.
The move by the Energy Department comes one week after another Indiana startup working on a plug-in hybrid van, Bright Automotive, closed down after dropping its pursuit of a similar loan it originally applied for in 2008, saying it could no longer wait for the agency to act on the application.

Read more: Department of Energy says 'no' to Carbon Motors' loan request for police car | Fox News

SloMotion 03-08-2012 09:38 AM

After Solyndra-gate, of course the Administration is going to back off of it's alternative energy loans, it's an election year. I can't help but think the taxpayers were just spared having to absorb another multi-million dollar fiasco.

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