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The bankruptcy filing caused a halt in Ford Transit Connect production

While the electric vehicle (EV) industry seems to be moving forward in many ways, it has also experienced some setbacks over the last year. Unfortunately, many of these setbacks involve EV batteries, and now, Ford is in the same boat.

Azure Dynamics, a British Columbia-based EV firm, has filed for bankruptcy in the United States. Azure Dynamics is responsible for installing the battery electric powertrain in Ford's Transit Connect.

Azure Dynamics filed for bankruptcy on Monday, and was forced to lay off 120 employees worldwide. Layoffs occurred in Boston, Michigan, Canada and the United Kingdom.

In addition to layoffs, Azure Dynamics said it will no longer proceed with a planned stock offering because the company just doesn't have the liquidity to move forward with an appeal of a ruling that opposed its planned stock offering.

"We wish to convey to the company's stakeholders our terrible sadness at this outcome," said Azure Dynamics in a statement.

Azure Dynamics received a four-year contract from the Government Services Administration for about $112 million. The contract gave the U.S. military and government agencies the ability to order the Transit Connect EV, and Azure said it had about 2,200 orders. In addition, Azure was attracted to Michigan because of the state tax credit, which is over $1.7 million over a seven-year period, and an 11-year local tax abatement approved by the city of Oak Park valued at $55,400.

On Ford's side of the situation, the bankruptcy means having to stop production of the Transit Connect EV, and it's currently unclear if this situation will be temporary or permanent.

So far, Ford has produced 500 EV Ford Transit Connect vehicles since 2010, when it began its partnership with Azure. Despite Azure's recent news of bankruptcy, Ford is standing behind the company.

"Our priority is to ensure that Azure's Transit Connect Electric customers continue to have support throughout their ownership experience," said Wes Sherwood, Ford spokesman.

Azure definitely isn't the only EV battery company (or alternative energy company) to file for bankruptcy within the past year. In January, EV battery maker Ener1 filed for bankruptcy after its subsidiary, EnerDel, received a $118 million Department of Energy grant in August 2009. Other EV battery issues that have occurred recently include General Motors' Chevrolet Volt, which experienced a series of battery fires last year, and problems with Fisker Automotive's Karma plug-in hybrid batteries, which will be replaced entirely by A123 Systems Inc. for $55 million.

Other failed alternative energy companies that have filed for bankruptcy include solar panel company Solyndra, which received a $535 million loan guarantee from the government despite warnings of Solyndra's viability, and Beacon Power, which received nearly $43 million from the government in August 2010 and filed for bankruptcy in November 2011.

Source: The Detroit News

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RE: The Green Bubble
By Amedean on 3/28/2012 7:30:02 PM , Rating: 0
Im also a 3 time combat veteran as an infantryman hoah! 82d Airborne 1-505 PIR!!! I had the balls to pick up a rifle while others flap their lips about doing something. I understand the politics of the region very well and no historian will ever cast doubt that black gold had nothing to do with the focus on the middle east.

I did not say it was the only reason, but that black cocaine has cost many lives and taxpayers money.

RE: The Green Bubble
By Amedean on 3/28/12, Rating: 0
RE: The Green Bubble
By Reclaimer77 on 3/28/2012 7:39:41 PM , Rating: 1
I respect your service and thank you for it. And, not that it should matter in an argument, I was unable to qualify for military service due to a knee disability. Otherwise I damn well would have answered the call.

However when you say things like "black cocaine" you just come off like someone who's running with a Liberal talking point.

Furthermore unless you buy into some conspiracy theory that Bush "started the war" to get his "oil buddies" more profits, the war ultimately helped destabilize the oil supply. Which I fail to see how that would benefit the country in any way. Not to mention that we didn't even secure oil when we easily had the opportunity to.

The industry didn't benefit either. Oil company profits go up and up, true. However on further analysis, we see "big oil" profit margins getting slimmer and slimmer as the cost of crude skyrockets. A situation NO business want's to be in.

In closing following your logical progression and support for alternative energy, does this mean that soon we'll be going to war with China over their rare earths that are needed to fuel the green movement?

RE: The Green Bubble
By Amedean on 3/28/12, Rating: 0
RE: The Green Bubble
By Reclaimer77 on 3/28/2012 8:24:52 PM , Rating: 2
I have to be honest that the partisan politics has been a growing thorn in my side and when I see so so many people polarized by ideology it has been tremendously discouraging and sometimes I pounce.

You and me both brother.

And no worries, we're a lot the same. I appreciate a spirited debate.

"Nowadays, security guys break the Mac every single day. Every single day, they come out with a total exploit, your machine can be taken over totally. I dare anybody to do that once a month on the Windows machine." -- Bill Gates

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