HARBOR CITY, CA --- Balqon Corp., a developer and manufacturer of heavy-duty electric vehicles and electric propulsion systems, rolled out its first production yard tractor, a Nautilus E20, at the grand opening of its production facility in Harbor City, CA.

Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa attended the grand opening.

"Today we start to see the payoff of our investment in cultivating new environmental technology," said Villaraigosa. "The trucks that roll off the Balqon assembly line in the months and years ahead will help green our ports and clean our air, while also creating green-collar jobs and pumping millions of dollars into our regional economy."

Balwinder Samra, CEO of Balqon Corp., noted that the event celebrated a public-private partnership.

"Our company has moved to this local community to create green jobs and also agreed to pay royalties to both AQMD [Air Quality Management District] and Port of Los Angeles, which is expected to yield over $1.0 million in royalty payments during the first three years," Samra said. He added that "the company has received increased interest in its products in global markets and expects that this year over 40 percent of the revenues will be generated by international customers while creating hundreds of jobs in this local community." 

Also in attendance at the production facility's grant opening were Santa Ana Mayor Miguel Pulido, Los Angeles Councilwoman Janice Hahn, and Los Angeles Harbor Commission President S. David Freeman.

In a collaborative arrangement with the port and the South Coast Air Quality Management District, Balqon received $527,000 in seed money to build and test a prototype of its heavy-duty electric truck. According to the Los Angeles Times, the L.A. Port has signed on for 25 trucks at a cost of $5.7 million.