Earlier this week, Chrysler confirmed it would be using battery packs supplied by A123, an American company that specializes in high-tech lithium ion battery technology, to power future electric vehicles as part of its ENVI program. To make this deal work out, A123 will build an assembly plant somewhere near the Motor City in Michigan. This proposed plant would eventually employ 14,000 people and have the capacity to supply 5 million hybrid vehicles or half a million battery electric vehicles.

Of course, a plant such as this doesn't come cheap, and A123 is reportedly planning to launch in more than one location. To help defray a sizable portion of the $2.4 billion or so it would cost to get these plants built, the battery maker has applied for $1.84 billion in loans from the Department of Energy. Today, though, A123 confirmed that at least one plant will be built in Michigan regardless of whether or not its loan application is approved. Currently, A123 has plants in Massachusetts, South Korea and China.

[Source: Automotive News - sub. req'd]

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