Coda Automotive will finally start selling its battery-electric sedan by the end of February, Coda CEO Phil Murtaugh told the Detroit News.

The Los Angeles-based company will soon have five dealers – one in San Diego, one in the San Francisco Bay Area and three others in locations that haven't been disclosed – the newspaper said, adding that Coda plans to have 40 dealers in 25 cities by year end. The company hasn't disclosed how many vehicles it plans to sell this year.

The company, which opened its Los Angeles headquarters in November, said last September that it raised $147 million in its fourth round of financing to bring its total to more than $300 million since the company's 2009 founding. Coda will sell its 150-mile-range Sedan for $39,900 and said earlier this month that it would offer a version with a slightly shorter range for $2,650 less.

Coda Automotive parent company Coda Holdings said last week that it would launch a division specializing in energy storage, as the company looks to cash in on what many believe will be a rapidly growing market for secondary use of electric-vehicle batteries. The new company, Coda Energy, will specialize in designing battery systems that may be used for on-site power supply as well as a backup power source in the event of a grid outage. Coda has an existing business partnership with its car-battery supplier Lishen, which also makes lithium-ion batteries for companies such as Apple and Samsung.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 41 Comments
      Dan Frederiksen
      • 3 Years Ago
      it's a steal. dead dead
      harlanx6
      • 3 Years Ago
      Great! Buyers will now have the choice of buying another small car with limited range. Now all they have to do is find buyers who want to pay $40K ( or forcing their neighbors to subsidize them to the tune of $7500, reducing their contribution to around $32,500 ) for a small car with limited range. Do you see the problem here? By the way, the State of California is studying the problem of reduced road taxes from cars no longer using fuels that are taxed. Will taxes on EVs follow? Come on, this is the state that has never seen a tax they didn't like. My best guess is the EV market in California will quickly reach the saturation point, after which Volts, Leaves, and Codas will languish in the showrooms. There are actually exiting new car models coming on the market every year. improved in every aspect, and they are reasonably priced. The demise of the ICE industry has been greatly exaggerated.
        Spec
        • 6 Months Ago
        @harlanx6
        The funny thing is that someday you'll be driving an electric car and look back at all this hate. And the sad part is that you will still be unable to admit you were wrong.
      EV Now
      • 3 Years Ago
      The problem with Coda is not (just) styling. It is reliability - both of the car & the company. We don't know whether Coda will exist next year, let alone 5 years from now. Who is going to buy a car from them - definitely not retail. I think they are fine for fleet - where looks & long term reliability probabldy don't matter as much.
        niky
        • 6 Months Ago
        @EV Now
        GM and Chrysler were bankrupt on paper but had a huge amount of industrial production capacity, research and development capacity and assets. It's pretty easy to start from that far down if you have a lot of eggs in your basket. Coda is a relatively unknown quantity touting an amazing range from their electric car, which no one has tested yet, and selling a sedan with a bodyshell not only made in China, but seemingly designed in China from cast-off Daewoo parts. This is not to say Chinese products are junk. But there is obviously a big difference between a well-engineered Chinese-made iPad, and a cheaply-engineered, cheaply-built iPad-knock-off like the aPad. Yes, I've used the aPad. Yes, it's absolute garbage. Still, I've driven horrid Chinese cars, I've driven bad Chinese cars, and I've driven surprisingly good Chinese cars. Unfortunately, I have yet to be impressed by any Chang'an vehicle I've driven. While the quality of the electric components are an unknown, so we can give them the benefit of the doubt. Chang'an itself, however, is a known quantity, and has a whole lot to prove in terms of reliability and safety. If it were me, personally, I would have gone with a Haima glider. Those body shells, at least, are based on 2000+ Mazda platforms, not 1990's Mitsubishis.
          Letstakeawalk
          • 6 Months Ago
          @niky
          The battery is arguably the most complicated part (in terms of getting good quality for longevity, safety, and performance characteristics), and those are being supplied to CODA by Lishen. Lishen is famous for their quality - they also are the supplier to Apple, Samsung, Nokia, Motorola...
          niky
          • 6 Months Ago
          @niky
          It's not the battery I'm worried about, actually, it's the quality of all the components attached to it. I am uncomfortably reminded of another famous Chinese import that came in with high hopes and turned out to be a very substandard Chinese EV wrapped around a battery pack that at least gave it useable range... the Zap Xebra. In which case, the "glider" used cost nearly a tenth of the price of the final product in gasoline form. When you have a platform that cheap, it shows in the final product. And so far, all test drives have been guarded about the quality of the car, despite no one having any complaints about the actual drivetrain (yet).
        PR
        • 6 Months Ago
        @EV Now
        "We don't know whether Coda will exist next year" Isn't that where we were at a couple of years ago with GM and Chrysler (and Ford after all the suppliers went bankrupt)?
          Joeviocoe
          • 6 Months Ago
          @PR
          CODA is certainly not "too big to fail". CODA exists merely to scare the large automakers into moving quicker with EV production. For that, I cheer them on. But no, I don't trust their reliability. If they cannot take the time to properly design the exterior and interior... then I have serious doubts about the design as a whole. I think they will go bankrupt in a couple of years... but the major automakers of the world will all have at least one EV out or coming very soon.
      noevfud
      • 3 Years Ago
      Too bad the body is already more than 10 years dated. I drove this thing, no thanks for the price point. Far too GEO Metro looking and vary basic and boring inside and not very refined in the drive. It doe shave a good drive system though.
      brotherkenny4
      • 3 Years Ago
      I have said it before. They need to get the price to the consumer at 25K or less. That goes for all electrics and PHEVs. The only one there now is Mitsubishi, and only until the tax credit is gone. So these guys (CODA) would actually have to sell at $32,500. They are about 5K high for the shorter range version. I guess while they are production limited they can ask the high price because some people would gladly pay the extra cost to be green, or because they really hate the oil companies, and the terrorists, and that we send a billion dollars a day out of the country for imported oil (actually that varies depending on the price of oil, anyway, it's a lot of money).
      carney373
      • 3 Years Ago
      A lot of people, like my father, who takes a certain perverse pride in driving boring practical nondescript cars like the Toyota Tercel and now the Toyota Echo, would gravitate to the Coda over the Volt (too sporty) or the Leaf, which looks like it game from "The Jetsons". But Ford, with the Focus EV, is boldly stepping into the boring niche, causing a stir of excitement among boredom fans.
        carney373
        • 6 Months Ago
        @carney373
        came not game. AOL, allow comment editing and join this century please
      Spec
      • 3 Years Ago
      I don't understand why people whine about the way the Coda looks. Yeah, it is plain boring sedan. Nothing wrong with that. And the Leaf isn't exactly a looker. I'm more concerned about aerodynamics and I'd say it comes up short in that area but I guess that was intentional in order for it to be more consumer friendly.
        EZEE
        • 6 Months Ago
        @Spec
        I largely agree. Many people ignore reliability reports, safety, etc., because the car is hot or looks cool. Corvettes and Wranglers have classically had poor reliability (although I have heard Chrysler is finally trying to address that), yet they have always sold well. That said... I believe it was Harley Earl that said (paraphrase) 'it makes no sense to build a boring or ugly car. Good looking sheet metal costs no more than ugly sheet metal.' Personally, I would take a boring, reliable car, over an exciting breakdown prone car any day of the week.
          PR
          • 6 Months Ago
          @EZEE
          Harley Earl didn't have to meet crush zone impact standards.
      Actionable Mango
      • 3 Years Ago
      I wonder who the heck keeps giving them financing. What am I missing here?
        Letstakeawalk
        • 6 Months Ago
        @Actionable Mango
        Stumbled across this: From 2010: "Coda Automotive is getting a cash infusion of almost $300 million, allowing the California-based startup to speed up production of its electric vehicles and batteries with joint-venture partner Lishen Power Battery. Coda and Lishen will have a $294 million line of credit with China-based Bank of Tianjin Joint-Stock Co. Ltd., Coda said in a statement today. The partners also have about $100 million in cash." http://www.autoobserver.com/2010/03/coda-lishen-partnership-gets-294-million-line-of-credit-for-ev-battery-production.html
        Letstakeawalk
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Actionable Mango
        Well, Forbes seems to like them: "CODA's development of its cost-effective, clean energy battery systems, its flagship zero emission vehicle -- the CODA 2012 sedan -- and its visionary leadership team, landed the company in the venerable list prior to the sale of its vehicles or CODA Energy storage systems. CODA employed 118 people in 2010 and currently is the fastest-growing company in Los Angeles, with a 275 percent job increase year to-date and an expected 300 percent growth by the end of 2011. The company recently announced it has started production of the zero emission all-electric CODAÂ five passenger sedan. Forbes' list of America's Most Promising Companies features 100 privately held up-and-comers with compelling business models, strong management teams, notable customers, strategic partners and precious investment capital. "Sizing up younger, privately held companies is hard: Their fortunes can change very quickly and there's a dearth of public data," says Forbes Executive Editor Brett Nelson. "We took a more comprehensive approach to evaluate their health and potential." To sharpen its search, Forbes teamed up with CB Insights, a Manhattan-based data firm that tracks investment in high-growth private companies." http://www.theautochannel.com/news/2011/12/12/018042-coda-holdings-named-one-america-s-most-promising-companies-by.html
          EZEE
          • 6 Months Ago
          @Letstakeawalk
          Ltaw You're doing a fine job!
          miles
          • 6 Months Ago
          @Letstakeawalk
          Lately Forbes seems to be mighty schizophrenic with it's coverage of the auto biz. The way they're tooting the Coda horn here is odd - % growth? Yeah, of course, they're just making their push into the US. going from 40 people employed to 118 doesn't seem anything to fawn over. How about Fiat's growth rate in their first year, did they crow about that? Seems fishy. I smell some political/election slant or other motivations. I sat in this car at the Detroit show recently and WOW! I was time warped back to 1994 amd my room-mate's early-90's Geo Metro. They aren't trying to sell these on styling or quality, that's for sure.
      Gary
      • 3 Years Ago
      I really hope coda and this car are successful! I can get past the boring looks and the 10 year old interior dash. If this car has a real world range of 100 to 120 mile range I think i has a chance. My biggest worry is how many parts on this car are made in china? The Chinese motorcycles and cars are junk, I hope this car does not end up being a "rattle bucket".
        Letstakeawalk
        • 6 Months Ago
        @Gary
        As the Fisker Karma is demonstrating, even the guys who build Porsches can be a huge letdown regarding QC. The only w
          Letstakeawalk
          • 6 Months Ago
          @Letstakeawalk
          (cut off) The only way to know what the quality is like is to see the end product. Apple trusts the Chinese explicitly.
        Spec
        • 6 Months Ago
        @Gary
        I think most of it is made in China. Some assembly to be done in the USA.
          Letstakeawalk
          • 6 Months Ago
          @Spec
          "The all-electric CODA is final assembled in California and features components and subsystems manufactured all over the world. The majority of the vehicle’s key electric drive components are manufactured in the United States. Our chassis and body (glider) are manufactured at an existing facility we lease and operate in China, where CODA engineers maintain strict control over quality and safety. Following this process, we ship the glider to California, where we install the energy storage system, and complete vehicle assembly. The final inspection and quality assurance processes also take place in California." http://www.codaautomotive.com/electric-car-information/
          Spec
          • 6 Months Ago
          @Spec
          Nice. So perhaps the motor & controller are made here. That's good. I'm sure the battery is not though.
      Casey Jensen
      • 3 Years Ago
      Why would anyone buy this over a leaf?
        Spec
        • 6 Months Ago
        @Casey Jensen
        Because they want a sedan and they want greater range. The Coda has a pretty big battery pack in it.
      • 3 Years Ago
      I think the proper phrasing here should be that Coda will start "offering the sedan for sale". How many they will actually sell, that's another story entirely:)
      PR
      • 3 Years Ago
      How can they start sales without an EPA rating yet? Or have I missed that info? I don't see it on their website, or on the EPA website. If they get an EPA rating significantly over 100, then the old body isn't going to keep them from long-term success. They will sell their 1st gen. car on superior range for it's price, and they will just need a new glider for their 2nd generation Coda, and they will be fine. There are plenty of companies changing gliders moving into 2nd generation EV's. BMW has done it once already, and will be doing it a second time going to the i3. Tesla dropped the Roadster glider, and is developing a new 2nd gen roadster on a new glider, etc... I personally don't think the looks are that horrible. They revamped the interior, and polished up the exterior and it looks much better than it originally looked when it first came out.
        miles
        • 6 Months Ago
        @PR
        Is it even necessary to get EPA rated for a vehicle that burns nothing?
          PR
          • 6 Months Ago
          @miles
          There are 2 major reasons for EPA ratings. 1) They provide a single standard for providing a measure for range that can be compared between different cars from different makers. 2) They provide an efficiency number to determine how much electricity you will "burn" each mile.
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