Phoenix Motorcars SUT/SUV production delayed until at least 2008

Aside from Tesla, the electric vehicle startup company that has gotten the most attention over the past year is probably Phoenix Motorcars. Phoenix's big claim to fame is the first use of the Altairnano lithium titanate battery pack which is claimed to have over 25,000 charge cycles support for recharging in ten minutes. Phoenix had announced their intentions to begin deliveries of their sport utility truck during the fall of 2007 with plans for 500 vehicles in the first year.

Unfortunately, an ABG reader who was on the waiting list has informed us that Phoenix CEO Daniel J. Elliott has sent out an e-mail stating that the SUT has been delayed until at least early 2008. Like others before it, Phoenix has evidently run head long into the realities of production engineering and certification. Mass-producing a vehicle is a non-trivial task if you want to create something safe and reliable that people will spend a lot of money on.

Another issue that was noted in the message is finalizing their financing package. Apparently selling vehicles at a loss of up to $200,000 per unit in the hopes of selling clean air credits to make up the difference is also posing an issue. The full text of the message from Phoenix is after the jump, and we're double-checking with Phoenix to make sure the email is legit.

[Source: Gregger]
On behalf of Phoenix Motorcars I wish to thank you for your continued support and interest in our company and what we believe to be a truly revolutionary full performance battery electric vehicle. We must also thank you for your patience in our development progress as we have worked to bring our product to market. We recognize that our product roll out has taken longer than originally expected as we continue to work through certification with the California Air Resources Board (ARB), finalize our financing package, and set up our production facility that will allow us to deliver at the sales volumes we are targeting.

While Phoenix Motorcars had hoped to begin initial deliveries of its vehicles by this fall, we have decided to delay deliveries until early 2008.

As Phoenix Motorcars continues to demonstrate our Sport Utility Truck, the all electric vehicles impress fleet operators with robust features including the high-power NanoSafe 35-KWh battery packs, the highly efficient electric drive systems and the utility to carry 4 passengers and a substantial payload. As you know this vehicle is robust yet environmentally friendly, offering no compromises to a full day's work.

At present, Phoenix Motorcars has greater than 500 orders from fleets nationally with a high concentration in California and we are working with our customers to finalize features and content that will allow them to seamlessly integrate the vehicles into their fleets. As part of this process, you will be contacted to work with our team on the final specifications for your vehicle(s) and projected delivery schedule.

Phoenix Motorcars wishes to again thank you for your support, patience and interest in our product. We remain very excited and committed to our product, customers and investors and look forward to making our first deliveries soon. We will continue to keep you informed of our progress and will provide updates to you as we move closer to bringing our no compromise all electric SUTs and SUVs to the market.

Sincerely yours,

Daniel J. Elliott
President & CEO
Phoenix Motorcars, Inc.

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