Fisker Buys Mothballed GM Factory to Build $40,000 Plug-In Hybrid Cars

By dancurranjr On November 12th, 2009

fiskerFisker Automotive is buying the old General Motors factory in Wilmington, Delaware, to produce an affordable, family-oriented plug-in hybrid sedan to cost under $40,000 after federal tax credits.

Fisker expects the production facility will create or support 2,000 factory jobs plus more than 3,000 jobs for vendors and suppliers when the factory goes on-line in late 2012.  Plus thousands more consctruction jobs between now and then to retrofit and upgrade the factory, which dates from 1947 and used to produce Pontiacs, Saturns and Chevrolets.

Right now, Fisker is calling the project to build an affordable plug-in hybrid car Project NINA. But it is unlikely the model itself will be called Nina. Fisker’s other plug-in electric car is the Karma, an $80,000 beauty that looks and acts like a sportscar. It should. Company founder Henrik Fisker used to be design director for Aston Martin. The Karma is being produced in Irvine, California, where company headquarters are located.

Fisker expects to produce 75,000-100,000 fuel efficient PHEV hybrids a year at this former GM factory, which was chosen for its size, production capacity, world-class paint facilities, access to shipping ports, rail lines and available skilled workers, according to a statement by Henrik Fisker at the ribbon cutting.

Access to shipping is important, because Fisker expects to export more than half of the sedans it produces in the USA..  Fisker Automotive announced today, Nov. 4, that it is partnering with the  Emil Frey Group one of Europe’s most prestigious auto groups, to import, market and service Fisker hybrids in Switzerland, Germany, France, the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland will provide Fisker with a strong operational base in Europe.  .

The Wilmington Assembly plant has a proud history. It was built by General Motors in1947 and over the years it churned out more than 8.5 million cars, including the Pontiac Streamliner, Chevrolet Impala, Chevrolet Malibu, Saturn L-Series and the Pontiac Solstice/Saturn Sky/Opel GT roadsters.

SOURCE: Examiner

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