Here’s the latest action we’re following today on the GreenBeat:
Vinod Khosla strikes back at the WSJ — Range Fuels, a biofuels startup backed by billionaire venture capitalist Vinod Khosla, got dealt a pretty tough criticism in a WSJ editorial this month that also tackled the government’s support of Range. Khosla has fired back with two strong responses to the editorial. While the WSJ piece said Range received $76 million in DOE grants only to produce lackluster results and close down a factory, Khosla said the company only took half of that amount and argues Range is making progress. He also pointed out that the government heavily subsidizes the oil industry, and that success requires risk.
Gevo sued by BP and DuPont’s joint venture — The biofuels company is fresh off its IPO and ready to gear up to produce biobutanol, a renewable compound used in advanced biofuels. But it was sued for patent infringement by Butamax, a joint venture between BP and DuPont that also makes biobutanol. Part of Gevo’s $107 million IPO proceeds could wind up going towards legal costs.
Fisker raises $150 million ahead of hybrid launch — The electric car startup raised $150 million earlier this month at a $600 million valuation, and plans to start production March 21 for its long-awaited luxury plug-in hybrid, the Karma. This comes after several rounds of delays and price increases for the car, which is now priced at $95,900, a 20 percent increase from the original $80,000 tag. Fisker’s backers include storied venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caulfield & Byers and New Enterprise Associates. The car will likely go on sale March or April of this year.
BMW, Rolls Royce show off electric and hybrid offerings — Watch out, Fisker and Tesla. Luxury automakers are jumping into the green car game. BMW has created a new sub-brand of vehicles under the name “i” that are eco-friendly. Products planned include all-electric commuter car i3 and a high-performance plug-in hybrid called the i8. Super-luxury carmaker, Rolls Royce, plans to show off next week a working model of a plug-in hybrid called the Phantom102EX (pictured).