Electric-car company Aurica to keep NUMMI open

An electric-car company by the name of Aurica Motors LLC is proposing a plan to keep the California plant New United Motor Manufacturing Inc open, a plant that was a joint venture between General Motors and Toyota. Aurica said that it will build zero-emission vehicles there, according to General Manager Matt Pitagora.

“We want to keep the plant open, and we believe we have a very viable plan to do so by manufacturing electric cars,” Pitagora said. “It”s all about keeping the lights on.”

Aurica is a little-known start-up based in Santa Clara, California, with eight employees and unknown finances. The company plans on building electric-vehicles within two years at NUMMI, which is scheduled to close its doors on March 31. GM originally pulled out of the venture last year after undergoing reorganization under Chapter 11 bankruptcy. Toyota later said that keeping the plant open without GM was not financially viable.

Aurica said it was start training NUMMI’s 4,700 workforce in April and will keep as many workers on the payroll as possible. Aurica plans on financing the move by tapping into the federal government’s green car economic stimulus fund.

Aurica said it has a chassis design for its car, which could cost in the range of $40,000 to $50,000.

– By: Omar Rana

Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)