Coda Automotive, the wee little electric car maker that could, sounds like it can't. Reports are coming in that the small California based company laid off 50 people last Friday, including the company's spokeswoman Larkin Hill. Advertisement Hill told PlugInCars.com that she was "not able to talk on behalf of Coda anymore." Coda's small electric car went on sale in March for $37,250 has apparently sold fewer than 100 units. It was also recalled in August for some faulty safety equipment. Sales since then have been virtually none. It is being reported that Coda has laid off nearly everyone they could in order to keep the doors open and the lights on. What this means for the future of the little Chinese-made sedan is unclear, but it certainly can't be positive. (Hat Tip to @nytjamescobb !) … [Read more...] about Huge Layoffs Reportedly Hit Tiny Electric Car Maker Coda
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Small, California-based start-up automaker XP has filed a lawsuit against the Department of Energy that accuses the Department of outright favoritism to major established car manufacturers for federal grants and loans. The grants and loans are part of a program to encourage the development of electric vehicles, and currently only Ford, Fisker Automotive, Nissan, and Tesla Motors have been awarded any loans or grants. XP, who have been developing a partially inflatable-bodied electric car, says in their complaint XP is seeking to have applicants who were "targeted" receive fair re-reviews, in a transparent manner, if they so desire. Investigations have shown that DOE officials intentionally stalled numerous applicants' reviews in order to force them out of business and protect favored players. Advertisement Other fledgling automobile companies are referenced as being targeted as well: Unfairly processed applications, based on public statements in national media, include: A loan … [Read more...] about Has The Department Of Energy Been Playing Electric Car Company Favorites?
Aptera, the California electric vehicle startup that once hoped for ten thousand sales of its futuristic three-wheeled 2e per year, ceased operations on Friday after failing to secure needed funding. As you can sadly see in these videos, in the wake of the collapse, the company's now-unemployed staff went on a rampage, destroying every prototype car they could get their hands on. Four short shaky video clips taken inside and around Aptera's California facility have been posted on YouTube and brought to broader attention by GreencarReports.com. They show at least three Aptera bodyshells being crushed, dropped from a forklift, and unceremoniously left on a dumpster by employees whose actions and audible comments can only be understood as anger and disgust at how the company and their hard work come to nothing. We've got them above, but be advised that they are deeply unpleasant to watch. Advertisement There may have been some method to this maliciousness: By damaging the egglike … [Read more...] about Watch Aptera employees smash prototype electric cars as company goes under
Ever-struggling long-experienced electric car maker Th!nk is planning on bringing the City to our cities in the US next year, allowing you to go gas-free, Norwegian-style. The little car has a 126-mile range on an overnight charge, and if you give the batteries a workout, the City will top out at 65 MPH. It's going to take a while to get there, though: Despite its top speed, they've only listed a 0-50 time of 16 seconds, leaving us to assume their stopwatch doesn't read high enough to record a proper 0-60 time. More specs and full release after the jump. Th!nk must have confidence in their batteries, because the City has power locks, a 4kW electric heater, electric windows, electric mirrors, air conditioning, an electrically heated windscreen, stereo CD with MP3, USB, Bluetooth, and even a navigation & multimedia system. Advertisement Believe it or not, Th!nk claims this really is a car, not just a quadricycle. At least, that's what they're telling folks at the British … [Read more...] about Th!nk All-Electric City Car Coming To US In 2009
XP Vehicles wants to sell you an inflatable car that costs under $10,000. It'll be shipped to you in two boxes and take roughly two hours for two people to build. Completely electric, the car's light weight means it can get 300 miles on a single charge or up to 2,500 if you use their "hot-swap" technology. Oh, and its NASA-grade inflatable material-the same stuff used by our landers in space-is supposed to let you drive off cliffs and stuff. Q. What's all this about driving them off cliffs and floating them in floods and tsunami's? Are they really super cars? Advertisement It all sounds too good to be true until you realize that, best case scenario, you have to pick up your date in a freakin' balloon car. (Still, totally cool if you were one of those X-Games types and paint it Mt. Dew green, I bet.) [XP Vehicles via Ubergizmo] … [Read more...] about Inflatable Car Can Drive Off Cliffs, Into Children’s Parties