Azure Dynamics Files For Bankruptcy, Suspends Ford Transit Connect Electric Production

Ronnie Schreiber
by Ronnie Schreiber

The Detroit News is reporting that the company that electrifies Ford’s Transit Connect Electric vans, Azure Dynamics, AZD, has filed for bankruptcy and suspended the production of the small battery electric van. Azure Dynamics announced that 120 employees, including 50 at their Oak Park facility just outside Detroit where AZD performed the conversions, have been laid off. So far about 500 Transit EVs have been made since late 2010. There is no word if the company will be able to restart production.

A Ford spokesman said, “Our priority is to ensure that Azure’s Transit Connect Electric customers continue to have support throughout their ownership experience,” but declined to say if FoMoCo is looking for a new producer to pick up production. AZD also produces the Balance Hybrid Electric, a medium duty hybrid truck based on the Ford E-450. Last year AZD said they had 2,200 orders in hand for the Transit Connect Electric, including a $112 million order from the U.S. government’s General Services Administration. The state of Michigan gave AZD a tax credit of $1.7 million over seven years and the city of Oak Park gave them an abatement on local taxes for 11 years to persuade the company to locate in Michigan. An AZD spokesman expressed optimism that the company would be able to reorganize under bankruptcy. “I think we really have a bright future,” he said. The Canadian based company will not be making a planned public stock offering. It doesn’t have enough cash to cover the cost of appealing an Ontario Securities Commission ruling concerning that IPO. In a statement the company said, “We wish to convey to the company’s stakeholders our terrible sadness at this outcome.”

Ronnie Schreiber edits Cars In Depth, a realistic perspective on cars & car culture and the original 3D car site. If you found this post worthwhile, you can dig deeper at Cars In Depth. If the 3D thing freaks you out, don’t worry, all the photo and video players in use at the site have mono options. Thanks for reading – RJS

Ronnie Schreiber
Ronnie Schreiber

Ronnie Schreiber edits Cars In Depth, the original 3D car site.

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  • GS650G GS650G on Mar 28, 2012

    I think the statement that "electric rates will necessarily rise" is putting people off from taking the plunge. Once you go electric you are stuck with the utility rates, no shopping around much. Gas is high but as recently as 3 years ago was half as much. Electricity will only go up as coal is eliminated, more electric usage occurs, and the grid is strained.

    • Charly Charly on Mar 29, 2012

      You can always install your own generator.

  • George B George B on Mar 28, 2012

    The problem is battery price, not range. With an electric car you get the utility of a used beater car for the price of a luxury car. I'd love to have an electric car for short trips around town if it had a low enough price to match how much time it spends parked.

  • Argistat If China invades Taiwan (becoming even more likely thanks to DT's isolationist rants) , then the US is completely screwed. If someone tried to list all the manufactured items and manufacturing equipment that contain semiconductor chips, the list would be so long you'd never complete it. Finally a real effort to help bring this into the US.
  • SCE to AUX What a boondoggle.I'd rather have 40 sandwich shops opened to hire those 200 workers, and it wouldn't cost $300 million. They could include chips with every meal."The company is targeting 4.2 GWh worth of lithium-ion battery packs annually by 2026."For reference, Tesla's Gigafactory One has been at over 37 GWh annually for years, not counting its energy modules (another 14 GWh).
  • JMII Checking Cars-N-Bids the price of Rivians has dropped significantly. These things went from 100k down to 60k on the used market. I assumed it was because they finally shipped enough units as I've seen a few on the roads around me.I had a guy at the local boat ramp asked if I liked my Rivian. I told him what I was driving was in fact a Hyundai Santa Cruz. To me which he asked how I liked my EV. I responded, nope this is a turbo 4. He looked very confused - granted it was dark 'o clock in the morning so maybe his coffee hadn't kicked in yet because a Rivian and SC look very different. Both have a futuristic lighting setup so maybe that is why (again it was dark).
  • Lou_BC ****Cracked engine blocks 2.7 litre turbo 4 banger. *****"GM has issued a new Customer Satisfaction Program. The Customer Satisfaction Program was released in February of 2024 and is tagged as N232415060, Block Main Oil Gallery Hot Core Pin Casting Defect. This particular Customer Satisfaction Program only applies to units of the Chevy Silverado 1500 produced for the 2023 model year. It’s currently unclear exactly how many units are affected, however, the Customer Satisfaction Program also applies to units of the 2023 Chevy Colorado, as GM Authority covered previously."
  • Duke Woolworth The advantage of EVs is the luxurious quiet, even in the cheapest/smallest ones. Passengers can speak in normal volume, and the quiet is less stressful. And no oil changes.