U.S. Commerce chief announces electric vehicle grants

Wednesday, August 5, 2009 | 4:18 p.m. CDT

KANSAS CITY — Missouri will receive more than $15 million in federal grants tied to developing more efficient and cheaper electricity-powered vehicles.

U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke announced the Department of Energy grants Wednesday during a visit to Kansas City. The grants are part of a $2.4 billion effort to boost the electric vehicle industry and create jobs nationwide.

Smith Electric Vehicles U.S. Corp. makes all-electric commercial trucks. The company will receive $10 million to help build its planned U.S. manufacturing plant in Kansas City.

The Missouri University of Science and Technology will receive $5 million for electric vehicle research.

Ford Motor Co. and Chrysler LLC are both receiving grants for building electric vehicles, including those made at Ford's plant in Claycomo and Chrysler's plant in St. Louis.

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