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As Department of Energy relaunches loan program, we consider past successes and failures

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The US Department of Energy (DOE) is trying out a new solution to loans that have flopped – auctioning them off. A $50-million loan previously award to Vehicle Production Group LLC (VPG) through the Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing loan program (ATVMP) has gone unpaid. VPG, a maker of compressed natural gas-powered wheelchair-accessible vans, shut its doors in May after running out of cash.

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The streets of Gotham are about to look a lot different. After being inundated with legions of bulky Ford Crown Victoria and the occasional Toyota Sienna or Prius for years, New York City's hack pool is slated to get a fresh crop of yellow ugly thanks to its "Taxi of Tomorrow" program.

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Vehicle Production Group MV-1 - Click above for high-res image gallery

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Vehicle Production Group MV-1 - Click above for high-res image gallery

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