Filing marks end of Carbon Motors

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Carbon Motors promised to re-energize Connersville’s flagging manufacturing industry.

That hope ended with a thud after Carbon Motors filed for Chapter 7 liquidation in U.S. Bankruptcy Court, marking the collapse of a company that once attracted high hopes and investors with its plan to build high-tech police cars.

According to documents filed Friday, all that’s left of Carbon Motors is about $19,000 in assets. Those included a prototype police car, the company’s patents and intellectual property, office furniture, files and other miscellaneous items.

The company listed more than $21 million in liabilities.

Most of liabilities are from investors who poured millions into the company. Other companies also claimed losses, including German automaker BMW and Michigan-based Inteva Products, LLC. Those companies were suppliers for Carbon Motors, and claim the defunct company owes them about $3 million combined.

In July 2009, Carbon Motors announced plans to set up shop at the old Visteon plant in Connersville, hiring up to 1,500 workers. That plan hinged on a large federal loan. The Department of Energy rejected that $310 million loan in March 2012, marking the start of the company’s eventual collapse.

In May, former executives sued the company, claiming Carbon Motors owed them $600,000 in salary that was promised but never paid.

The bankruptcy filing protects the company from any litigation, including that lawsuit.

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