New Electric Sedan Has Big Backers

Santa Monica, Calif. based Coda Automotive's all-electric sedan, which it expects to begin selling in the state in 2010. Coda Automotive

This story was written by CNET's Martin LaMonica.

Electric sedan maker Coda Automotive has attracted some well connected people with latest round of funding, including former Treasury Secretary and Goldman Sachs CEO Henry Paulson.

The company, which plans to sell an all-electric sedan in California next year, said on Tuesday that it has completed a series B round of $24 million in equity. The money will be used to bring its car to market and fund a joint venture to manufacture the car battery.

In addition to Paulson, President Clinton's former chief of staff, Thomas "Mack" McLarty, invested and will become a board member. Other investors include investment bank Piper Jaffray, energy investor Tom Steyer, former Edison International CEO John Bryson, and company executives.

Although its corporate headquarters are in Santa Monica, California, Coda Automotive has partnered for both design and manufacturing of its planned car.

The chassis for the car will be manufactured by Chinese-state owned carmaker, Hafei. While working for President George W. Bush, Paulson led in U.S.-Chinese economic relations and he is an advocate for conservation in the U.S. and China, according to Coda. The company's flexible business model will also allow the company to get its product to market earlier than other electric automakers, said Coda Automotive president and CEO Kevin Czinger in statement.
By Martin LaMonica
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