Ener1 Inc., the owner of a company that received a $118 million U.S. Energy Department grant to make electric-car batteries, filed for bankruptcy protection after defaulting on bond debt amid heavy competition from Asia.
Ener1, based in New York, makes lithium-ion batteries for plug-in electric cars, which were scrutinized by federal auto- safety officials after a General Motors Co. Chevrolet Volt caught fire, people familiar with the probe said in November. A two-month federal safety investigation cleared the Volt of danger, and GM is beginning a marketing effort to tout the car as safe and innovative.
Under President Barack Obama’s economic stimulus package, the Energy Department awarded grants in an attempt to create a U.S. electric-car industry. Ener1’s EnerDel unit, based in Indianapolis, was the grant recipient and has received about $55 million of its grant so far.
All I can say is this: truly incredible.
Actually, I can say one more thing: Solyndra.