Bailout Watch 153: Subaru and Nissan Applying for D.O.E. Loans
The Senior Director of Communications for the Alliance of Automotive Manufacturers has revealed that Subaru and Nissan are applying for Department of Energy’s (D.O.E.) low-interest loans. As TTAC reported earlier, the just-released rules for the loans do NOT contain a provision limiting calls on the $25b available to American factories twenty-years-old or older– as originally thought. The door is now open for any automaker with operations within these United States that thinks it can build a vehicle that’s 25 percent more fuel-efficient than a comparable model. “For competitive reasons, I would think that any elegible automaker would apply for the loans,” Charles Territo told TTAC. “You can’t write anyone off.” That said, if the D.O.E. rules are enforced as written, you CAN write off GM and Chrysler; they don’t meet the regulations’ criteria for financial viability. Territo expressed confidence that Detroit’s automakers will “figure out a work around” for that and other stipulations. “It’s Washington. Where there’s a will, there’s a way.” Territo’s organization is also supportive of the next bailout: another $25b to $50b aimed at improving American automakers’ liquidity. “A failure will cost more than a bailout,” Mr. Territo opined, declining to provide statistics to justify the claim.