By Drew Johnson
Thursday, Apr 26th, 2012 @ 10:52 am
 
Coda Automotive has become the latest automaker to withdraw its loan request from the U.S. Department of Energy's Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing Loan Program.

Coda, an up-start electric vehicle maker based in California, announced on Thursday that it has officially withdrawn a $334 million loan request from the DOE, citing a waiting period that has already stretched more than two years. Coda was planning to use the federal money to build a new battery plant in Columbus, Ohio that would have created up to 2,000 new jobs, but the automaker will now shift battery production to China.

"We just needed to continue operations overseas to meet our business plan," Forrest Beanum, Coda's senior vice president of government affairs, told Automotive News.

Coda is just the latest in a string of automakers that were forced to withdraw their loan request from the DOE program as the result of a long waiting period. Chrysler most recently withdrew its request after a three-year wait.

So far the DOE has doled out just $9 billion of the program's total budget of $25 billion, with Ford being the program's largest recipient to date. Nissan, Fisker and Tesla have also received loans from the program.