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Electric car builder seeks Mass. site for production

February 7, 2009
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A company that makes electric cars said it is scouting sites in Massachusetts for its first mass-production plant. BG Automotive Group, based in Philadelphia, said it is considering Fall River and New Bedford for a 60,000- to 100,000-square-foot building to produce the C100, a "neighborhood electric vehicle" that can travel up to 120 miles on a single charge and can be legally driven on Massachusetts roads with posted speed limits of 35-45 miles per hour.

"We're looking at locations that are strategically more appealing because of the available labor force," said Gregg Nourjian, BG Automotive's representative in the Boston area. Both cities have unemployment rates significantly higher than the state average. He said the company is seeking funding for the plant, which would employ about 150. "These are jobs that are easily trainable and well above minimum wage," Nourjian said. "They're good jobs for the community."

Parts for the C100 - a four-passenger vehicle priced between $16,000 and $18,000 - will come from overseas, Nourjian said. "We're not really manufacturing anything other than battery boxes or things that require slight modifications," he said.

Nourjian said he has also looked at potential sites in Bridgewater and Taunton. Because the assembly process is fairly simple, he said, the company could start producing cars within about four months.

Mark Pothier

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