A123 Systems has struck a deal with Wanxiang, a major China car parts maker, a first step to investment of up to $450 million. A123 Systems’s advanced battery tech powered it into Fast Company’s Most Innovative Companies list in 2011. But the company has seen tough times recently. A recall of defective batteries in 2011, production delays of the Karma hybrid made by its partner Fisker Automotive, and slowing sales of electric vehicles are in part to blame. The investment comes just in time, as the company reported a loss of $82.9 million for the second quarter today.
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