KANSAS CITY, MO – Smith Electric Vehicles Corp. announced plans to open a manufacturing facility in the state of New York in 2012 to build the Smith Newton all-electric medium-duty vehicle.

Smith will lease a 90,000-square-foot building near Hunts Point in the South Bronx and make investments in renovations, equipment, training and other projects. A package of state and city incentives valued at over $6 million -- including $3.4 million in Excelsior tax credit benefits from Empire State Development and $1.7 million in tax exemptions approved by the New York City Industrial Development Agency – will augment Smith’s private investment, according to state representatives. 

A Smith Newton all-electric truck in the Frito-Lay fleet

A Smith Newton all-electric truck in the Frito-Lay fleet

Once renovated, the former Murray Feiss building in the South Bronx will serve as a manufacturing, service and sales facility for Smith. The plant will create up to 100 jobs.

Smith is also expected to benefit from a new state program. Governor Andrew Cuomo earlier this month announced a federally funded electric vehicle buyer incentive program. 

The New York State Department of Transportation has committed $10 million in federal Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality funding for the initial year of a new plug-in, all-electric vehicle buyer subsidy program to attract clean vehicle manufacturers and encourage the purchase of any eligible zero-emission vehicle in New York State. The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority will administer the program.

Once program development is completed next spring, these federal funds -- offered in the form of vouchers of up to $20,000 per vehicle -- will be made available to the purchasers of any eligible all-electric vehicle over 10,000 pounds, regardless of manufacturer. New York State intends to make this program available for five years in order to encourage mass adoption and allow for strategic fleet conversion throughout the state.

"We’re pleased that $10 million of our Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Program funding will not only improve the air quality of our state but also incentivize companies like Smith Electric to create jobs in New York," State Department of Transportation Commissioner Joan McDonald said.