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Elio hopes to raise $100 million.

Troubled startup Elio Motors filed paperwork with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to hold an initial public offering (IPO) of its common stock.

The company hopes getting a spot on the NASDAQ Global Market will allow it to raise about $100 million. It will use the money to build prototypes, test them in real-world conditions, fine-tune the design, and finally start production of its three-wheeled commuter car.

"The number of shares to be offered and the price range for the proposed offering have not yet been determined," explained the company in a statement.

There are still a little over 65,000 reservation holders waiting to get their hands on Elio's first car, which is expected to return up to 84 mpg. Production has been pushed back numerous times, and the IPO filing states cars won't roll out of the former General Motors factory in Shreveport, Louisiana, until 2019 at the earliest.

Many are skeptical about what the future holds for Elio Motors because the company was dangerously low on cash at the end of last year. The IPO filing indicates it has $208,748 to work with, which is nearly $90,000 more than what it stated in its last financial report.

That's still a tiny amount of money for a car company, especially one embroiled in legal battles against various branches of the Louisiana government, so Elio's future hinges on a successful IPO.