Electrified vehicles, including variations of electric vehicles [EV] and hybrid electric vehicles [HEV], all have two things in common, an electric motor and a rechargeable battery. Unfortunately, the demand for EVs just isn’t as strong as anyone was expecting, or at least hoping.
Battery companies, such as A123 Systems, have been working on “the next big thing” in rechargeable battery technology, something that would revolutionize range and recharging time. What they’ve really been hoping to do is bring the price down. EV battery packs are a significant portion of the entire build price, and this has been just one of the limiting factors in EV popularity.
Recently, A123 Systems, an industry-leading manufacturer, has declared chapter 11 bankruptcy. Its assets are to be mostly taken over by Johnson Controls, a competitor in EV battery pack development. Fisker Automotive, on the other hand, is seeking an extension of the bidding deadline on A123’s assets and technology.
In January 2010, Fisker had signed a supply agreement with A123 for the Fisker Karma HEV’s new battery packs. A bankruptcy and asset distribution agreement would put a serious kink in Fisker’s future plans. Certainly, Fisker must want a chance at the auction to get A123’s advanced battery technology under its protection as well.
“A hurried sale process will be damaging to the estates and deprive creditors of value that may be realized through higher and better offers,” Gregg Galardi, a Fisker attorney, said in court papers filed today in Wilmington, Delaware.