Tesla Motors Inc rival Faraday Future informed Thursday of its plans to make an investment worth $1bn in a new US factory that will make its first cars in 2017. This mysterious car maker, which was launched 18 months back, is based at the Gardena, California, and is considering several locations for the factory such as California, Georgia, Nevada and Louisiana.
Faraday wants to beat Tesla
Faraday Future said that in the coming weeks it will announce the decision on the plant’s location. The firm’s senior VP Nick Sampson said it is critical for the its overall goals to select the right location for the future manufacturing facility.
“Producing our forward-looking and fully-connected electric vehicles not only requires the latest technology, but the right community partner,” Nick said in a statement.
Faraday has ambitious plans for its first car. It hopes to build its first car in slightly more than half the time Tesla Motors Inc took for getting its first car out the door. Faraday plans of making cars within three years of its launch while rival Tesla Motors, launched in 2003, took 5 years to make its first car. From there, it took four more years to build its own car from the ground up.
Silicon Valley funding Tesla rival
The source of funding has not been disclosed as yet, but according to Bloomberg, the Chinese billionaire Jia Yueting is supporting the firm. It is not known if the aid from the online video magnate is complete or partial. While Faraday is reportedly being backed by Chinese money, there is one Chinese Tesla Motors rival that is getting the funding from the Silicon Valley.
Sequoia Capital, which is among the oldest and best-known investment firms of Silicon Valley, has funded NextEV, a China-based electric car maker and a rival to Tesla. Bloomberg was the first to report this unusual investment from Sequoia Capital in September. The firm has made investments in relatively few clean tech firms, and has stayed away from some of the overhyped sectors.
Electric car start-ups can need large sum of money for getting off the ground, and can be very risky. The exact amount that Sequoia invested is not known. Sequoia has an office in China with 50 employees. “We think [the] EV sector has great potential and NextEV has a very strong founding team,” Sequoia Capital China told Fortune.
On Thursday, Tesla Motors Inc shares closed up 0.06% at $231.77. Year to date, the stock is up over 4% while in the last month, it is down almost 6%.