Why is old info about Fisker building Karma in Finland news again? ABC and Sarah Palin
Fisker says federal loan money used only in U.S.
By Todd Spragler
Something very important is happening these days in the Electric Car space. Electric Cars are moving from the Stage One - "Nobody notice and knows about it" to the Stage Two - "It is the Real Threat and we are better to deal with it right now". Everybody has the right to hate, but it looks like some has this right more than others and this right is well greased. Why somebody is so worried? Is it because Plug In Day was organised in more than 28 cities all across US with thousands of people taking part and it is with ONLY two models of electric cars on the market with still very limited supply? Is it because charging stations are mushrooming all across the country and Wall Street Journal complains about it? Is it because Chevy Volt and Nissan Leaf will be finally available in all markets in US by the end of the year? Or the matter to be worried now is that the next QEn+1 is coming and the price of Oil to be going up again? Maybe it is the coming twenty models of Plug In cars to be released next year? Or - we will throw the last one and you can continue - maybe it is the technological progress: with Tesla Model S coming next year with 300 miles range and Toyota announcing the lithium battery with 1,000 km miles range per charge by 2015 with Nissan working on 10 minute charger for the electric cars?
An unprecedented campaign in mass media against Electric Cars is ongoing these days. Reasons are all the same: "Electric Cars are dirty, they are very expensive, they are ugly, they are not selling well and there are no places to charge them". Last week the new claims were added to the hating mix - "dirty money and dealings in the electric space": SolyndraGate is taking over the Fisker. Why this old no news was made the news by FOX all over the media we are not sure...maybe it is related to the election "silly season" somehow.
The real reasons are much deeper and crucial for us and our ability to go forward: without the clear plan for the Energy Transition not only Wall Street will be occupied very soon. Next round of Inflation and Oil shock will place all society on the edge of the social break down. We still have the time and can vote one electric car and one charging station at a time, make our opinion known or support the companies involved in the Next Big Thing, but we need to have our Manhattan project for the Electric Cars on the state level and we need it now.
All you need to know about Peak Oil in one video.
"We have a great endorsement for the Electric Cars from FOX as usual...All recent mass media cry about Electric Cars which are not selling, polluting and ugly in general; makes us think that they are coming even faster than we have expected. Kerosene lights must be providing the long shadows for these kind of EV haters - this technology will not be stopped - it is happening and it is happening right now.
Just look across the pond, where UK is the front runner for all the monetary QE experiments. Recent QE program was announced just couple of weeks ago and petrol prices there are at the record high now. The ugly truth is that there is simply no more cheap Oil left around. Are you still horrified by 4 dollars per gallon - try UK with 8 dollars per gallon prices now!"
Detroit Free Press:
By Todd Spragler
WASHINGTON -- An electric car company that received a $529-million federal loan may be producing a smaller run of its first line of autos in Finland but promises that the funds it received have been spent -- and will continue to be spent -- only in the U.S., officials said Friday.
A spokesman for California-based Fisker Automotive and officials with the U.S. Department of Energy on Friday countered an ABC News report linking the loan, which was awarded two years ago, with the company's operations in Finland, where its first car, the Karma, is being produced.
According to the Energy Department, $169 million of the total went toward research and development of the Karma, but that supported more than 500 engineering and design jobs in California, not overseas.
Fisker spokesman Will Powell said the company was unable to find an automaker in the U.S. willing to contract to produce the small run of cars -- 8,000 a year -- of the $96,000 plug-in hybrid Karma.
The rest of the loan was earmarked for Fisker's second vehicle, the Nina, which is to be made at the former General Motors plant in Wilmington, Del. The company, Powell said, expects to employ 2,000 to 2,500 workers at the old Boxwood Road plant to make as many as 100,000 a year of the Ninas, which will cost less than $50,000.
The opening of the Delaware plant has run into regulatory delays pushing any large volume production into 2013, the Wilmington News-Journal reported Thursday, but the company still plans to hire thousands of U.S. workers.
"Not a single dollar of the Department of Energy loan has been or ever will be spent outside of America," Powell said. "The bigger picture is the car was brought to market in a certain way."
In its report, tagged an exclusive, ABC News linked the loan to the overseas production, raising questions at a time when House Republicans are investigating whether another Energy Department loan to solar company Solyndra, now in bankruptcy, was awarded inappropriately.
But the Energy Department noted that it was known before the loan was even awarded to Fisker that the company's first run would be made overseas, though the funding would support jobs in the U.S. For instance, the Wall Street Journal noted the Finnish production contract when it wrote about the loan at the time it was announced in September 2009.
The Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing program -- otherwise known as Section 136 loans -- was created to support $25 billion in research, development and manufacturing of alternative fuel and other advanced vehicles and their components. Ford got the largest of the $9.1 billion in loans awarded -- one for $6 billion.
The Energy Department said that loan alone supports 33,000 U.S. jobs as Ford retools plants in five states, including Michigan."
By Sebastian Blanco
That the $95,900 Fisker Karma would be built in Finland was never a secret, never up for debate. The car was delayed, and now costs more than it was originally supposed to, but the Finland thing has remained intact. In fact, when the automaker applied for its DOE Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing loan back in September 2009 and then again when the loan was approved in the spring of 2010, it specifically said that the loan was to build the company's next vehicle (the still-secret Nina plug-in hybrid) in Delaware – and maybe possibly also next-gen versions of the Karma. The plan always called for the first Karmas to be made by Valmet in Finland. In fact, Fisker has to make sure that none of the DOE money is spent overseas. This is all old news, right? The latest on Fisker is that the car just got its EPA certification and that celebrities like Leonardo DiCaprio (in real life) and Ashton Kutcher (on TV) drive the car.
Well this isn't the case if you're ABC News and you get to talk to company head Henrik Fisker and get him to say that there was "no contract manufacturer in the U.S. that could actually produce our vehicle." Fisker was explaining why his company wanted the loan: to restructure an old GM plant in Delaware and make plug-ins there. ABC put the story up, and then folks like Sarah Palin caught wind of it. Earlier today, Palin tweeted, "This is outrageous. Wake up, America." A staffer to Senator Jim DeMint (R-SC) joined in. Palin's outrage is somewhat understandable, given that ABC asks if, "whether another Solyndra is in the offing" with Fisker. To anyone who knows the full story, though, there is very little in the ABC article that's actual news. The only thing we noted was that Fisker said the Nina has already been designed and built and is being kept under wraps for competitive reasons.
We'd like to say that American should not pay any more attention to what Palin says about Fisker, but her tweets can be heard for miles, apparently. The DOE responded in a clear statement that says, "While the vehicles themselves are being assembled in Fisker's existing overseas facility, the Department's funding was only used for the U.S. operations. The money could not be, and was not, spent on overseas operations." Will it get the same traction?"