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Sneak-Peek Pictures! VVC 'All-American Car' To Be Made In Louisiana

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2011 VVC sketches

2011 VVC sketches

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2011 VVC sketches

2011 VVC sketches

Enlarge Photo

2011 VVC sketches

2011 VVC sketches

Enlarge Photo

2011 VVC sketches

2011 VVC sketches

Enlarge Photo

Tom Matano

Tom Matano

Enlarge Photo

Louisiana governor Bobby Jindal has announced that San Diego-based V-Vehicle will create 1,400 new jobs and assemble an all-new vehicle in the state. This follows days of speculation about a significant auto assembly plant announcement in Monroe, in the northern portion of Louisiana.

VVC, as the company is also called, "wants to reestablish American leadership in the global automotive industry," according to a Louisiana Economic Development (LED) info-sheet.

V-Vehicle was founded by ex Oracle Corp. executive VP Frank Varasano and is definitely not struggling to gather funds; it's being financed by well-known California venture capitalists—including some also backing Fisker Automotive (Silicon Valley firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers)—along with T. Boone Pickens.

We haven't yet seen pictures of the vehicle, but we do know that it was designed by Tom Matano, the 'father' of the original Mazda Miata. Matano also worked on the RX-7 and 929, and held positions at General Motors and BMW prior to that. He has most recently served as director of the school of Industrial Design at Academy Art San Francisco.

TheCarConnection.com has a lot of confidence in Matano, who's a strong believer in designs that still look good after a few years as opposed to those that go to extremes. “A model must be in a reasonable range to be successful," Matano told this editor in a 2006 interview. "It could be too futuristic, and buyers could call it ugly, or just too far beyond the current range of expectations."

"This car will be another icon of American industry," said Matano in a video from the LED. "Miata may be the iconic car in the last 25 years; this will be the iconic car in the next 25 years."

The plan for the plant, which was formerly occupied by the Guide Corporation, came together with $67 million in state incentives and $15 million in local funds, according to the Associated Press. VVC has also applied for funding for this so-called "All-American Car" through the Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing Loan Program, which confirms that the vehicle is likely either an electric vehicle or a plug-in hybrid combining another alt fuel.

"The thing that excited me the most about V-Vehicle is that it is a holistic change, so we're thinking about—from beginning to end—how to reconstruct a car company," commented KPCB managing partner Ray Lane.

"What we're doing of course is trying to create a new American car company," said CEO Varasano.

Alongside this post, we've pasted some quick screen shots from a promotional video for the development. While we can't guarantee that these are sketches of the upcoming VVC vehicle, it's likely. Note the clean, simple dash design, sports-car-like gauge cluster, and a cradle for iPods or PDAs.

This is all on the fast track. Construction and retooling for the 425,000-square-foot plant will begin later this summer. About two-thirds of the 1,400 new jobs will be directly through VVC (average annual salary of about $40,000), with the remainder through co-located supplier companies. Production at the plant is expected to begin in summer of 2010.

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Comments (19)
  1. Bring on the startups! I'd love to see Silicon Valley help to power a new wave of high-tech green cars in this country.
     
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  2. Let's start lots of new American companies and get our country back to work. Hooray for the VVC car.
     
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  3. As an owner of one of the original AC Cobras, I speak with a fondness of inovation and American can-do attitude. Hooray for San Diego, Louisiana and America.
     
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  4. BRAVO!! Go America...I'll buy one! This is definitely the way for America to head.
     
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  5. Great idea!! If this car is anything like my Miata, I want one. Will the Co. go public?
     
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  6. It would be nice to see the american car manufactured in the Blue Springs Mississippi Toyota plant that has been put on the back burner. Kudo's to T Boone Pickins
     
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  7. I am interested in a maintance job (mech) with your company please let me know how to apply. I am working in an auto. plant now and I am from la. and would like to move back thanks
     
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  8. Yay! Bricklin's Back, Or is it DeLorean?...Tucker?
    Oh. Sorry.. it's the NEW "car of the future."
    I thought car companies weren't allowed to make it in the U.S. now without being owned by the government? Doesn't this violate the new U.S.S.A's statutes on private industry?
    Sorry but pretty darn skeptic to any car company with a plant, no concept, and who expect to be building cars in a year.
     
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  9. Hello Linda Johnson and any other interested applicants,
    Feel free to send a resume to jobs@v-vehicle.com!
    Regards,
    Evan Mignogna
    VVC Recruiting Manager
     
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  10. Keep the Unions out and they will have a strong chance!!
     
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  11. "Miata may be the iconic car in the last 25 years"??? I want what he is smoking.
     
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  12. If you get any concept drawings of the vehicle and plant please send us an email. Would love to add it to our famous buildings at the LEGO based toy museum in Ohio. www.brickmusem.net
     
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  13. Sounds great, but WC is another term for restroom in most of Europe. They may want to select a better alternative that won't have a good portion of the world thinking the "toilet" American automobile company.
     
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  14. Finally, a car company and a car that is truly American. I agree with Mike, a good company doesn't need a union. As long as we keep the government and the union out of the company the normal american may be able to afford to buy one.
     
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  15. To Evan Mignogna,
    I wish you and your exciting new company the best of luck. I would love to have the option to buy a true American made car from a true American car company. When your company achieves success and is searching for the location for a second factory, please keep St. Louis, MO in mind. We have one shuttered car plant already (Ford), and most likely will be adding another soon (Chrysler). So, existing manufacturing facilities with plenty of experienced labor waiting for a chance to get back to work.
    Thank you VVC for having the vision and guts to put Americans to work actually producing something again.
     
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  16. I agree with the other Mike. Don't let the Unions get a toe in the door, and you will be successful.
    I would love to see America making a car that will compete with Japan and Germany.
     
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  17. We will be sewing the Seat Covers at JCI Mexico Plant
     
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  18. How can i apply for a job? I worked in West Monroe for 7 years til my job closed down back in June of 09.
     
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  19. good
     
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