Good news for automakers building alternative-fuel three-wheelers: Congress has just passed legislation that would allow such vehicles to be eligible for funding from the Department of Energy.
Although the DOE's Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing Incentive Program sought to grant funding to companies building advanced, fuel-efficient cars, it was limited to companies building four-wheeled vehicles. Three-wheeled cars, like the Aptera, were rendered ineligible. The new legislation, which has been approved by both the House of Representatives and the Senate, seeks to change things.
"This is a huge win for scientific innovation and the environment," said Rep. Brian Bilbray, a co-sponsor of the original bill. Bilbray also commented, "We need more innovation and less regulation when it comes to promoting new ways to save energy while saving money at the pump."
Although the bill still requires the signature of President Barack Obama, reports indicate he will move to sign the legislation into law in a "prompt" manner.
Thus far, the DOE has grantedmore than$8 billion in loans to help fund green automotive research and production. Aptera is reportedly seeking $75 million as it ramps up production of its 2E.
Source: Automotive News