How Indianapolis Is Reinventing Itself as the Electric Vehicle Capital of the Midwest

Region's expertise in hybrid cars goes beyond high-profile players

Published: 28-Sep-2009

If electric van upstart Bright Automotive and battery producer EnerDel can deliver product as well as they’ve generated publicity, central Indiana stands to gain thousands of manufacturing jobs.

But drowned out by reports of potential jobs and the millions of dollars in federal funding the two have landed are other companies toiling in the emerging hybrid automotive market, albeit as quietly as the electric motors on a Toyota Prius.

In fact, meld Bright and EnerDel’s lineup with components made by other firms, such as Remy International, Indy Power Systems and Light Engineering, and you’d practically have all the key components for a plug-in vehicle.


Renault Nissan Alliance CEO Carlos Ghosn poses with Renault ZE electric concept car

Industry executives acknowledge that uncertainties linger over the batteries needed to power them.

Aptera Typ-1 electric car would use 10kWh battery pack.

Just one mine has enough lithium carbonate to produce the cells for almost 800 million 10kWh (Aptera-sized) battery packs. Pictured is Aptera Typ1.

BMW 7 Series ActiveHybrid

The joint ohnson Controls-Saft venture will manufacture the lithium on batteries at their factory in Nersac, France.


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