Electric carmaker Coda's battery JV raises capital

SAN FRANCISCO, March 30 Tue Mar 30, 2010 6:00am BST

SAN FRANCISCO, March 30 (Reuters) - California electric start-up Coda Automotive said on Tuesday that its battery joint venture has secured $394 million in equity capital and loan commitments, and is looking at setting up a U.S. battery facility.

Coda said that it, together with its Chinese joint venture partner Lishen Power Battery, has added $100 million in equity capital and has secured a line of credit for $294 million from Bank of Tianjin Joint-Stock Co, a Chinese bank.

The privately held company is planning to sell a fully electric car with a range of up to 120 miles, priced in the low $30,000s, Coda Automotive President and CEO Kevin Czinger told Reuters in an interview.

The company plans to deliver 14,000 of the electric cars in the California market by the end of 2011.

For U.S. production, Coda's battery joint venture is considering sites in California, Ohio and North Carolina, Czinger said.

"We are looking at sites and DOE funding as well."

The U.S. department of Energy has various funding programs aimed at encouraging the development and commercialization of fuel-efficient vehicles.

(Reporting by Poornima Gupta; Editing by Richard Chang)

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