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Italian E-Bike OEM Plans U.S. Debut Without Lenders

Tacita, an Italian electric motorcycle manufacturer, is planning its U.S. debut without retail or floorplan lending partnerships, Chief Executive Axel Heilenkotter told Powersports Finance.

The company will use its own capital — rather than a floorplan lender — to finance inventory, he said, adding that since the company is still “defining” its U.S. business model, it will sidestep retail lenders for the time being, too. “If the future strategic decision we will adopt for this market is a [direct and dealer] model, we will probably look for [a lender],” Heilenkotter explained.

However, the company acknowledged that adding a retail lender would allow it to devote capital to vehicle production and research.

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Currently, the company is “more focused on looking for investors,” Heilenkotter said. Tacita will “probably” seek lenders when it has products ready to ship from its Torino, Italy-based factory, he added. The company expects to start adding inventory to its Florida facility in late January or early February, 2020.

Tacita will open the U.S. location to capitalize on the volume of pre-orders it has received for its T-Cruise electric cruiser model. Of the company’s more than 200 global pre-orders, 70% have come from the U.S, Heilenkotter said.

The company does not have any plans to open more U.S. locations, although customers will be able to order products online. The price of the models vary, but a T-Cruise with a 9-kilowatt battery pack costs $13,394.

The manufacturer’s vehicle lineup includes the T-Cruise and several T-Race on- and off-road models. Its R&D department is working on two other models that it plans to announce at yearend. Additionally, the company is working with partners on four-wheeled models and watersport vehicles.

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