Carbon Motors Prototype Headed to Auction Block

Startup Carbon Motors declared bankruptcy last year after failing to receive a $300 million loan from the Department of Energy.

WardsAuto Staff

January 21, 2014

1 Min Read
Carbon Motors E7 cruiser built from ground up for law enforcement use
Carbon Motors E7 cruiser built from ground up for law enforcement use.

A Carbon Motors E7 prototype police cruiser, among the last remnant of the now-bankrupt startup, will be placed on the auction block Jan. 23.

Connersville, IN-based Carbon Motors, founded in 2003, planned to build thousands of E7s which, unlike conventional police cruisers that are based on retrofitted production vehicles, was designed from the ground up for law enforcement use.

Former Carbon Motors CEO William Santana Li, a former Ford engineer, told WardsAuto in 2008 the E7 would come standard with integrated emergency lights, shotgun mounts and a 130 Hz-350 Hz bass siren. An optional automatic license-plate-recognition system was to be available, as well as a unit that detected biological, chemical and radiation hazards.

It was to be powered by a 250-hp turbodiesel engine sourced from BMW producing 400 lb.-ft. (542 Nm) of torque and able to propel the car to 60 mph (97 km/h) in 6.5 seconds and achieve a top speed of 155 mph (249 km/h).

The company filed for bankruptcy last year after the Department of Energy rejected its application for more than $300 million in loan funding. Company executives at the time called the rejection a political decision and shortly after abandoned the facility, leaving behind just the prototype, some intellectual property, a few computers and a trade-show booth.

Connersville was left with millions in unpaid loans and the empty facility, which was to employ some 1,500 workers for E7 production.

Proceeds from the E7 auction are to help repay some of the company’s debt. An auction spokesman says there has been considerable interest in the prototype, which is functional with the exception of some of its more advanced features, such as computer systems. Despite the interest, the spokesman says officials are unclear on how much the prototype might fetch.

Subscribe to a WardsAuto newsletter today!
Get the latest automotive news delivered daily or weekly. With 5 newsletters to choose from, each curated by our Editors, you can decide what matters to you most.

You May Also Like