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http://blogs.delawareonline.com/delawareinc/2010/08/10/a123-delivering-batteries-for-fiskers-first-karmas/?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter

A123 Systems, Fisker Automotive’s advanced battery supplier, is already delivering battery packs that will power Fisker’s first Karma sedans, A123’s CEO, David Vieau, said in a 5 p.m. conference call with analysts.

A123, an MIT spinoff in Watertown, Mass., reported widening second-quarter losses after the close of the market Tuesday. The company lost $34.2 million, or 33 cents per share, in the three months ended in June, compared with $21.9 million, or $2.36 a share, a year ago. Sales were $22.6 million, up from $19.7 million last year.

As many as a couple hundred of Fisker’s Karma sedans — $88,000 plug-in hybrids — could be built before the end of the year by a contractor in Finland. Fisker expects to ramp to full production by February, and produce 14,000 cars in 2011. Eventually, by 2016, Fisker has said it will relocate production of its Karma to the former GM plant near Newport. Fisker bought the plant last month from GM’s bankruptcy account for $18 million, plus $2 million for equipment inside. Fisker has said it will begin producing its second car, the Project Nina sedan, in Delaware in mid-2012. It has yet to unveil the Nina sedan, and isn’t expected to do so until early 2012.

Analyst estimates about Fisker’s 2011 production numbers are less optimisic than the company’s own — not suprisingly. Barclays Capital analyst Vishal Shah, in a recent report on A123, estimated that Fisker would only produce 5,000 cars next year. Shah acknowledged, however, that dealers in the U.S. and Europe were seeing “very strong” demand for the car, with one dealer taking 40 pre-orders in a single night. Fisker, Shah reported, has recorded between 2,500 and 3,000 Karma pre-orders.

In other news out of today’s earnings release, A123 said it has struck a deal to supply high-tech batteries to a “major auto manufacturer” that is getting into the electric car business. Naturally, A123 would not diclose the company’s name.

A123, it’s worth noting, is a primary beneficiary of the federal government’s effort to grow an electric car industry in the U.S. The company was awarded a $249 million stimulus grant last year, which it has been using to redevelop one production facility in Livonia, Mich. and to build another about 13 miles away in Romulus.
 

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I read online that prices for battery packs are expected to drop sharply over the coming years, from around $900 per KW this year - which puts the price of the 20 KW-battery pack of the Fisker Karma at around $18.000 - to a mere $300 per KW by 2015, and $100 by 2030. This will give Fisker the chance to make some money in the coming years (making it a viable company, which ofcourse we all want) and also keep the price of the 'Nina' in check.

Backfitting a new battery pack (lighter, more range) after a few years will also become interesting with these lower prices per KW.
 

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Regarding "backfitting" a newer battery later down the road, I wonder how feasible this will be -- we'll find out with time I suppose.

In other news, A123 is in the red.

http://green.autoblog.com/2010/08/13/a123-systems-q2-loss-grows-spins-off-grid-battery-venture-drop/

Autoblog said:
A123 Systems had a tough second quarter with an increased loss and the loss of potential business with Chrysler. A123 had been named by Chrysler as its electric vehicle battery supplier early in 2009. Unfortunately, Chrysler's ENVI division was dissolved late last year following the company's bankruptcy process and Fiat canceled most of the electric vehicle projects. A123 was to have supplied batteries for the planned Fiat 500 EV, but Chrysler has reportedly brought in another supplier. That other supplier is probably Electrovaya because it is also supplying batteries for the Ram plug-in hybrid test fleet.

A123 will be supplying batteries to Fisker for the Karma PHEV and claims to have an exclusive development deal with another unnamed automaker.

A123 has also reported that its second-quarter loss grew to $34.2 million – up from $21.9 million in the same quarter last year – with revenues up 14 percent to $22.4 million. Meanwhile, the battery maker expects transportation to make up a bigger percentage of its business in the near- to mid-term. Increased business from heavy-duty manufacturers like Eaton and Navistar will up the transport share to 60-70 percent of its revenues.

Finally, A123 has spun off a new business called 24M Technologies that is partially funded by venture capital funds. 24M is developing battery solutions for grid power storage including wind and solar.
 
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