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Police car maker not giving up on Indiana plans

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A company with plans for building high-tech police cars at an eastern Indiana factory has added a venture capitalist on board as it tries to raise millions of dollars to get off the ground.

The move by Carbon Motors Corp. comes after the U.S. Department of Energy's in March rejected the company's request for a $310 million loan to finance the start of production at a former auto-parts factory in Connersville, about 60 miles east of Indianapolis.

New board member Ron Nash is a member of InterWest Partners, a California-based technology venture capital partnership. Nash said he believes the company has a "breakthrough product" with its car.

Carbon Motors announced in 2009 its plans to move into a former Visteon plant and hire perhaps 1,500 workers.

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  • smoke and mirrors
    The Carbon technology is now at least 5 years old. It would be almost a decade old before cars could be delivered. This one-trick pony needs to leave the stage.
  • bad investment
    Carbon Motors sounded like a business which was destined to fail from the very beginning.

    I can't imagine that any police department would seriously consider paying $50,000 - $60,000 for a vehicle from an upstart company when a Dodge Charger can be had for $30,000. The Carbon Motors police car looks good on paper but the company has yet to build a single production vehicle. We have no idea how much the cars would cost to maintain or how reliable they would be. What happens if they start falling apart after a year of wear and tear?
  • All Wheel Drive
    IMHO they should be AWD too.
  • BMW Powered?
    I was impressed right up to the point the video mentions the BMW powertrain. Law Enforcement is spending American $$ for their cars and should be buying American...I get that the chassis is fabricated here, but the drivetrain should be too. The linked article (http://www.ibj.com/carbon-motors-prototype-police-car-is-crammed-with-technology/PARAMS/article/19310) says "Chairman and CEO Bill Santana Li anticipates sourcing 70 percent of the car domestically..." but in my view the powertrain is a lot more than 30% of the car, at least in $$, if not by weight, and likely more than 30% of the jobs directly and/or indirectly driven (no pun intended) by this product.

    Upgrade an American V8 or drop in a twin-turbo and then you'll have it right.

    PS...I know some track hounds that would love to flog this thing around a road course...too bad a public version with all-carbon-fiber body isn't offered without the police-centric bits.

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  1. Aaron is my fav!

  2. Let's see... $25M construction cost, they get $7.5M back from federal taxpayers, they're exempt from business property tax and use tax so that's about $2.5M PER YEAR they don't have to pay, permitting fees are cut in half for such projects, IPL will give them $4K under an incentive program, and under IPL's VFIT they'll be selling the power to IPL at 20 cents / kwh, nearly triple what a gas plant gets, about $6M / year for the 150-acre combined farms, and all of which is passed on to IPL customers. No jobs will be created either other than an handful of installers for a few weeks. Now here's the fun part...the panels (from CHINA) only cost about $5M on Alibaba, so where's the rest of the $25M going? Are they marking up the price to drive up the federal rebate? Indy Airport Solar Partners II LLC is owned by local firms Johnson-Melloh Solutions and Telemon Corp. They'll gross $6M / year in triple-rate power revenue, get another $12M next year from taxpayers for this new farm, on top of the $12M they got from taxpayers this year for the first farm, and have only laid out about $10-12M in materials plus installation labor for both farms combined, and $500K / year in annual land lease for both farms (est.). Over 15 years, that's over $70M net profit on a $12M investment, all from our wallets. What a boondoggle. It's time to wise up and give Thorium Energy your serious consideration. See http://energyfromthorium.com to learn more.

  3. Markus, I don't think a $2 Billion dollar surplus qualifies as saying we are out of money. Privatization does work. The government should only do what private industry can't or won't. What is proven is that any time the government tries to do something it costs more, comes in late and usually is lower quality.

  4. Some of the licenses that were added during Daniels' administration, such as requiring waiter/waitresses to be licensed to serve alcohol, are simply a way to generate revenue. At $35/server every 3 years, the state is generating millions of dollars on the backs of people who really need/want to work.

  5. I always giggle when I read comments from people complaining that a market is "too saturated" with one thing or another. What does that even mean? If someone is able to open and sustain a new business, whether you think there is room enough for them or not, more power to them. Personally, I love visiting as many of the new local breweries as possible. You do realize that most of these establishments include a dining component and therefore are pretty similar to restaurants, right? When was the last time I heard someone say "You know, I think we have too many locally owned restaurants"? Um, never...

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