Elio was founded in 2008 and bought the factory in Shreveport, LA last year. The company is working with manufacturing partner Comau to sell any equipment they don't need to raise enough cash for production to start next year. And Elio will "recycle" whatever it doesn't use or sell, which is rather kind, environmentally. The company will occupy about 1.5 million square feet of the factory building.
Elio says it has 34,000 reservations for the $6,800 trike. That's up from 25,000 in July and from 10,000 in late February, indicating solid sales momentum. The production process will employ about 1,500 people. Sales appear to be helped by a 33-city tour Elio undertook this year to show off a prototype of the vehicle to prospective buyers. The company also "matched" reservation-deposit amounts (in the form of discounts on the purchase price), but that offer sadly expired September 1. Anyone who put money down – or the simply interested – should out Elio's press release for more info.
September 17, 2014
Elio Motors takes major step toward producing new vehicle at massive Shreveport plant
Reuse of manufacturing equipment and sale of surplus assets provides innovative solution for new company
Troy, Mich., (Sept. 17, 2014) – Elio Motors, Inc., announced today that it will work with its manufacturing partner, Comau, to sell surplus manufacturing equipment from the former GM manufacturing facility in Shreveport, Louisiana, where the company will begin production of its enclosed, three-wheeled vehicle in 2015. The strategy allows Elio Motors to reuse the machinery it needs to manufacture its high-mileage vehicle, raise funds that will go toward production and recycle valuable machinery it does not need.
Elio Motors announced in January 2013 that it had purchased all of the existing equipment in the facility. One of the most important steps in Elio Motors' overall manufacturing strategy was to determine which of the equipment would be required to manufacture the vehicle in the most efficient and cost-effective manner. The company has completed that assessment and is taking the unusual step of selling the surplus equipment.
"One of the keys to producing a low-cost vehicle is ensuring maximum efficiency in our manufacturing operations," said Paul Elio, CEO of Elio Motors. "Our team recently cleared an important first step by determining what existing equipment in Shreveport is mission-critical and what equipment can be sold. This level of detailed planning and execution is putting the processes in place to make Elio Motors a world-class manufacturer."
Comau plans to contract approximately 30 people to assist in the disposition of surplus assets and has enthusiastically agreed to give preference to local contracting firms where possible.
The announcement comes as Elio Motors is building momentum toward production. More than 34,000 people have made reservations for the innovative vehicle, which will have an anticipated fuel efficiency of 84 MPG and price tag of $6,800.
"Building a motor vehicle company from the ground up is a monumental feat," said Jim Holden, Elio Motors board member and former Chief Executive Officer of DaimlerChrysler. "Elio's partnership with Comau to effectively re-utilize equipment from the Shreveport facility and leverage the surplus machinery reinforces Elio Motors' theme of innovation. This is further proof that Elio Motors is going to make transportation history in 2015 when it begins production."
Elio Motors will create more than 1,500 jobs in Shreveport, La., where the company will rent approximately 1.5 million square feet of a 4.1 million-square-foot building. In addition to job creation, the Elio Motors project will help reduce the country's dependence on foreign oil and provide a more environmentally friendly transportation solution for American drivers.
The vehicle prototype is currently on a nationwide tour, introducing the vehicle to potential customers.
About Elio Motors
Founded by car enthusiast Paul Elio in 2008, Elio Motors Inc. represents a revolutionary approach to manufacturing an ultra-high-mileage vehicle. The three-wheeled Elio is engineered to attain a highway mileage rating of 84 mpg while providing the comfort of amenities such as power windows, power door lock and air conditioning, accompanied by the safety of multiple air bags and an aerodynamic, enclosed vehicle body. Elio's first manufacturing site will be in Shreveport, La., with plans for the first production vehicle to roll off the assembly line in 2015 and significant production, sales and distribution during the next two years. For more information, visit www.eliomotors.com or www.facebook.com/ElioMotors.
Comau is a worldwide leader in manufacturing flexible, automatic systems and integrating products, processes and services that increase efficiency while lowering overall costs. Headquartered in Turin, Italy, with an international network that spans 15 countries, Comau uses the latest technology and processes to deliver advanced turnkey systems that consistently exceed the expectations of its customers. Comau specializes in body manufacturing solutions, powertrain machining & assembly, robotics and maintenance as well as environmental services for a wide range of industrial sectors. The continuous expansion and improvement of its product range enables Comau to guarantee customized assistance at all phases of a project; from design, implementation and installation, to production start-up and maintenance services.
For further information about Comau's consolidated experience and its vast portfolio of products and services, visit www.comau.com.