Emerald Aims to Pick Up Where Bright Left Off
It’s a really good looking plug-in hybrid delivery van, targeted at fleet customers such as Coca-Cola, FedEx, UPS, AT&T and Frito-Lay. It’s being built in the Midwest, but with a lot of international support. If you think I’m talking about the ill-fated and Indiana-based Bright Automotive, which went belly-up after failing to win a federal Department of Energy loan, you get a gold star, but you’re wrong.
From Lotus to St. Louis
The company is Emerald Automotive, and it’s staffed by no less than five ex-Lotus Engineering employees. Yes, it’s a group of Brits relocated to America, originally with the idea of grabbing a loan from that $25 billon Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing (ATVM) fund. Emerald withdrew that request after the process threatened to drag out into 2013, but it can always re-apply. In fact, in the wake of the election the Solyndra fear factor is probably lifted and some of that government money is likely to begin flowing again soon.
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