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Bright Automotive Applies for $35M in Stimulus Package Grants to Accelerate Production of PHEV

Bright Automotive has applied for $35 million in government grants to accelerate the production of its plug-in hybrid the IDEA (earlier post), and to deliver battery solutions to the industry through its engineering services arm. The IDEA is a multi-purpose, plug-in hybrid electric vehicle in the light truck classification aimed at commercial and government fleets.

Bright Automotive has applied for approximately $18 million through the Electric Drive Vehicle Battery and Component Manufacturing Initiative (FOA DE-FOA-0000026) to create a technical center for the design, development and validation of advanced batteries for the Bright Automotive IDEA PHEV, and establish a battery pack manufacturing facility capable of producing up to 75,000 battery packs annually. This grant program, overseen by the Department of Energy (DOE) National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL), provides funding to support the construction of US based manufacturing plants to produce batteries and electric drive components.

Bright Automotive, as a partner in the Energy Systems Network (ESN) Project Plug-IN, has also applied for approximately $17 million through the Transportation Electrification Program (FOA DE-FOA-0000028) to develop, deploy, demonstrate, market, and evaluate plug-in hybrid vehicles. This grant program, overseen by the DOE NETL provides funding to establish development, demonstration, evaluation, and education projects to accelerate the market introduction and penetration of advanced electric drive vehicles.

In addition to these grants, Bright Automotive has applied for $450 million in government loans under the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing Loan Program. The company continues to work with the Department of Energy in support of its application.



I'm confused. This is the company that on May 28, only one week ago, announced on its web site that it would not be taking subsidies. Is this credible?


From the article:

"There’s a myth that electric vehicles need to be subsidized,”

"But the automakers still could use some help."

I take that to mean that a $5000 subsidy per car to the consumer may not be necessary, but government backed low interest loans may be required to get them into production.

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