Faraday Future’s plans to challenge Tesla Motors came to a screeching halt on Tuesday with a work stoppage at its $1 billion megafactory in North Las Vegas, Nevada.
Although no official reason has been given for the decision, just last week, Chinese tech entrepreneur Jia Yueting, who is funding Faraday, admitted that his company had run into money issues due to an over-extension of its global strategy.
The electric car startup, which is based in Gardena, Calif., said it plans to restart work on the plant in 2017, trade publication Automotive News reported.
The construction shutdown follows news in October that AECOM, the building contractor, warned Faraday Future that it could face work stoppage over millions of dollars in unpaid bills.
AECOM, and Faraday Future then issued a joint statement that said construction on the plant would continue.
“The business relationship between Faraday Future and AECOM is strong and we remain committed to building our factory of the future in North Las Vegas,” the statement read.
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A Faraday spokesman told Automotive News that no work stoppage would take place and that the automaker was working diligently with AECOM to resolve an overdue payment.
But on Tuesday, a Faraday spokesperson declined to confirm whether it missed payments and told Automotive News that Faraday “is working with” AECOM during an “adjustment period” at the plant.
Last December, Faraday negotiated a deal with Nevada for the state to provide more than $200 million in incentives for plant the that was expected to create 4,500 jobs.
Nevada State Treasurer Dan Schwartz said in an interview Tuesday the state had yet to issue $175 million in bonds that were part of the incentive package for the plant, and “is not on the hook for anything.’
As for Faraday’s future, a spokesman for the company said it is “refocusing its resources” on preparing its first production vehicle for introduction in early January at the annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.