Detroit Electric planned to begin building its Lotus Elise-derived electric sportscar at a facility in Plymouth, MI earlier this month, ultimately ramping up to a projected production capacity of about 2,500 units while employing over 100 skilled auto workers. The deal on the factory fell through, the projected demand and expected orders haven’t materialized, and the executives aren’t saying very much about any of it. All of which sort of begs the question: is the Detroit Electric car finished before it started?
Chris Demorro did a bit more investigating, and gave us the following synopsis on the fate of the Detroit Electric company. Here it is, below, as it originally appeared on Gas 2.
Detroit Electric Delays Launch Over Factory Deal
Though the Tesla Roadster is no longer in production, Detroit Electric hoped to fill the Lotus-shaped void left by Elon Musk’s electric automaker. While the company’s executives seem supremely confident, the reborn Detroit Electric is already running into snags, failing to sign a deal with the owners of a proposed factory location.
This means that production of the rebadged Lotus Exige (a coupe version of the droptop Lotus Elise) has also been pushed back, and executives have given reporters no timetable. There is also no mention of Detroit Electric’s partnership with Chinese automaker Geely, or their plans to launch a sedan and hatchback next year as well, making the whole thing seem shaky before production even begins. Talk about getting a company started on the wrong foot.
Despite claims of 0 to 60 mph time of 3.7 seconds and a top speed of 155 mph, the Detroit Electric SP:01 looks to be at least a year or more away. With a price tag of $135,000, Detroit Electric certainly seems like it wants to compete at the top end of the electric car market, but by the time they get the ball rolling next Tesla Roadster, which could be named the Model R, might be on market.
Time will tell if Detroit Electric can follow Tesla’s path, or remains stuck in Elon’s shadow.
Originally published on: Gas 2.