The recent bailout of America’s auto industry began with approval of so-called “Section 136” loans to help automakers retool factories for higher-efficiency automobiles. Ford, Nissan, Tesla and Fisker have already received their portions of the Department of Energy loans, but GM and Chrysler have had their payouts delayed due to the program’s strict “viability” requirements. But now Reuters reports that Chrysler’s request for $10b in low-cost government retooling loans is nearing approval. It’s not clear how much of that $10b will be approved, but according to Pentastar spokesfolks
Our application covers a wide variety of technologies including electric vehicles, (gasoline/electric) hybrids and advanced gasoline engine technology
Chrysler still owes some $5.7b to the US Treasury, and the cost of servicing that debt (interest on ChryCo’s existing government debt ranges from 7.22 to 14.33 percent) is considered a major reason for Chrysler’s second-quarter loss this year. GM is also seeking over $10b in 136 loans, but with only $16.5b remaining in the $25b 136 fund, either Chrysler or GM will have to receive less than their entire request. GM’s request will reportedly be approved sometime after Chryslers.