Altair Nanotechnologies Receives Initial Order for Electric Car Batteries; Altairnano Teams with Phoenix Motorcars and Boshart Engineering to Test Electric Automobiles

RENO, Nev.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--July 5, 2006--Altair Nanotechnologies, Inc. (NASDAQ: ALTI), a leading supplier of ceramic nanomaterials and high-power battery systems technology, today announced that it has received a $750,000 initial order for its fast charge, high powered batteries from Phoenix Motorcars, an early leader in the effort to mass produce full function, freeway ready electric automobiles based in Ojai, California. The battery packs will be engineered and manufactured at Altairnano's Anderson, Indiana facility and will utilize Altairnano's proprietary nano-lithium ion battery technology. Phoenix Motor Cars is using the engineering services of Boshart Engineering, Inc., based in Ontario, California, to develop the battery integration, validation, certification and regulatory testing.

"Altairnano's nano-lithium battery technology, when integrated with an optimized electric drive train could provide the impetus to rejuvenate and realize the promise of the electric vehicle vision," commented Daniel Riegert, Chairman of Phoenix Motorcars. "We are preparing for the manufacture and distribution of several thousand vehicles over the next few years."

“The combination of Boshart's engineering, Phoenix's electric vehicle expertise and Altairnano's battery technology bring together the necessary skill sets to build a viable electric road vehicle. We look forward to working with our partners on this exciting program”

Altairnano's President and CEO Alan J. Gotcher, PhD. said, "Our proprietary technology has the potential to deliver a safe, long-life, and high-performance battery, which is one of the hurdles that has prevented the electric vehicle from being commercially successful in the past."

"The combination of Boshart's engineering, Phoenix's electric vehicle expertise and Altairnano's battery technology bring together the necessary skill sets to build a viable electric road vehicle. We look forward to working with our partners on this exciting program," said Boshart President Ken Boshart.

In early 2005, Altairnano announced that it had developed innovative battery electrode material that in independent testing exhibited very fast charge characteristics. In September 2005, the company announced it had taken additional steps to commercialization by acquiring a leading-edge battery design and implementation group which it co-located in Reno, Nevada and Anderson, Indiana. On February 1st, 2006 Altairnano announced that it had started the manufacture of battery cells in its Anderson facility, and on May 23rd, Altairnano announced that these battery cells had passed key safety tests conducted by Altairnano. All of these were necessary technical steps to entering the electric vehicle market.

The next step, before engaging with an electric vehicle supplier, was to partner with an expert in electric drive-trains and a company who had an established track record in vehicle roadworthy compliance. On May 8th, 2006 Altairnano announced it had signed an agreement with Boshart Engineering.

Together Boshart and Altairnano proposed an integrated drive-train and battery system to Phoenix Motorcars. The recommended solution met a battery specification Phoenix had previously been unable to fulfill in terms of vehicle range, speed, weight, recharge time and price/performance. In addition Altairnano was able to provide a safety specification for the battery unmatched in the industry.

"We have a carefully thought out plan for commercializing our innovative nano-battery program, and we are executing to plan," said Alan J. Gotcher, Ph.D. "I am delighted with the partnerships we have formed with Phoenix and Boshart. Together we believe that we can open up new markets for electric vehicles."

ABOUT PHOENIX MOTORCARS, INC.

Phoenix Motorcars, headquartered in Ojai, California, has been an industry leader in the development of battery electric freeway speed vehicles since 2001. The mission of Phoenix Motorcars is to manufacture zero emission vehicles to reduce the toxic emissions of the largest contributor to air pollution, personal automobiles. For additional information visit www.phoenixmotorcars.com. All information in this press release regarding Phoenix Motorcars and its plans and operations has been provided by Phoenix Motorcars and has not been verified by Altairnano or Boshart.

ABOUT BOSHART ENGINEERING

Boshart Engineering, headquartered in Ontario, California, with offices in Ann Arbor, Michigan and Seoul, Korea has years of experience in automotive engineering. The company's engineering team specializes in vehicle homologation services. Boshart Engineering is an expert in emission certification, vehicle homologation, vehicle & technology integration as well as many testing programs including over-the-road durability, competitive vehicle testing, ADP testing, brake testing, remote site testing, and procurement activities for OEM's and aftermarket manufacturers. Boshart Engineering has extensive experience in working with vehicle OEM's and tier-one suppliers around the world as well as working with the California Air Resources Board and the Environmental Protection Agency. For additional information visit www.boshartengineering.com. All information in this press release regarding Boshart Engineering and its plans and operations has been provided by Boshart Engineering and has not been verified by Altairnano or Phoenix Motorcars.

ABOUT ALTAIR NANOTECHNOLOGIES INC.

Altairnano is an innovator and supplier of advanced ceramic nanomaterials. With a skilled team of scientists in its 100,000 square foot facility who, coupled in collaborative ventures with industry partners and leading academic centers, have developed a unique portfolio of intellectual property and novel products. These researchers are complemented by a seasoned management team with substantial experience in commercializing innovative, disruptive technologies.

Altairnano focuses on nanotechnology applications to enable new high-growth markets. In alternative energy Altairnano is pioneering new battery materials and systems. The company is applying nanotechnology to the development of drug candidates for humans and companion animals, coatings materials for implants, and materials for dental applications. Its high performance nanomaterials have applications in paints, coatings, and the treatment of water and air. The Altairnano Hydrochloride Pigment process, the first new patented pigment process in 50 years, is an environmentally friendly method for manufacturing white pigment used in paints, paper and plastic. For additional information visit www.altairnano.com. All information in this press release regarding Altairnano and its plans and operations has been provided by Altairnano has not been verified by Boshart Engineering or Phoenix Motorcars.

Forward-Looking Statements

This release may contain forward-looking statements as well as historical information. Forward-looking statements, which are included in accordance with the "safe harbor" provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, may involve risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause the company's actual results and performance in future periods to be materially different from any future results or performance suggested by the forward-looking statements in this release. These risks and uncertainties include, without limitation, the risk that Phoenix Motorcars may not complete testing of a vehicle using Altairnano's battery systems, that such battery systems may not perform as expected or that other factors will cause abandonment of the electric car project (or the use of Altairnano battery systems as part of the project) by Phoenix Motorcars; that even if an electric car using Altairnano batteries is developed by Phoenix Motorcars or another company, that major automakers or others with sufficient brand recognition and resources (which none of Altair or its partners has) will decline to manufacture and distribute the electric car for design, performance, cost, marketing or other reasons; and that, even if such an electric vehicle is mass produced, demand and pricing will not be sufficient to permit long-term production or profitability for any entity involved. In addition, other risks are identified in the company's most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K, as filed with the SEC. Such forward-looking statements speak only as of the date of this release, and the company expressly disclaims any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements found herein to reflect any changes in company expectations or results or any change in events.

Contacts

Media Relations:
Fleishman-Hillard
Terry Banks, 202-828-9710
bankst@fleishman.com
or
Company Information:
Altair Nanotechnologies Inc.
Roy Graham, 775-858-3706
rgraham@altairnano.com
or
Institutional Investors:
Altair Nanotechnologies Inc.
C. Robert Pedraza, 775-858-3702
rpedraza@altairnano.com
or
Individual Investors:
McCloud Communications, LLC
Marty Tullio or Mark Tullio, 949-553-9748
marty@mccloudcommunications.com

Better Be Business Wired.

Business Wire is the leading source for press releases, photos, multimedia and regulatory filings from companies and groups throughout the world.