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Posts Tagged ‘fisker plug-in hybrids’

Q&A: Fisker Automotive’s Henrik Fisker

Can a small start-up rewrite the rules of the auto business?

by on Nov.03, 2009

Danish-born designer Henrik Fisker believes his eponymously-named start-up, Fisker Automotive, can revolutionize the auto business.

Danish-born designer Henrik Fisker believes his eponymously-named start-up, Fisker Automotive, can revolutionize the auto business.

He’s best known as a designer, the pen behind gracefully muscular concept and production vehicles like the BMW Z8 roadster and the Aston Martin DB9 sports car.  But Danish designer Henrik Fisker could eventually wind up better known for a small, eponymously-named California start-up company with some very big plans.

In an unexpected move, Fisker left Ford’s then parent company, Ford Motor Co., in 2005, to set up his own firm in Southern California.  Initially, he and his partners planned to revive the lost art of custom coach building, taking platforms from luxury makers like BMW and Mercedes-Benz and retrofitting them with limited edition bodies and interiors.  But a couple years later, the designer shifted gears again.

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Next June, Fisker Automotive will deliver the first of an all-new series of vehicles dubbed Karma, using plug-in hybrid powertrain technology.  Plug-ins go a step beyond conventional hybrids, like the Toyota Prius, with oversized battery packs permitting a motorist to commute or run errands largely on electric power alone.  But Fisker insists that’s just the beginning.  Late last month, he announced plans to use a $528 million federal loan to purchase an abandoned General Motors plant, in Wilmington, Delaware, to produce a second line of plug-ins which the company expects to export around the world.

Can a Danish sports car designer challenge the big names in the auto industry?  TheDetroitBureau.com Publisher Paul A. Eisenstein spoke to Henrik Fisker about his company, his plans and his challenges.

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Fisker Gets Critical $528 Million DoE Loan

“Significant step” to an affordable plug-in, company crows.

by on Sep.22, 2009

A small portion of the new DoE loan will help with the launch of the Fisker Karma, but most of the money is aimed at the mainstream plug-in hybrid program, dubbed Project Nina.

A portion of the new taxpayer loan will help with the launch of the Fisker Karma, but most of the money is aimed at the mainstream plug-in hybrid program, dubbed Project Nina.

The U.S. Department of Energy has approved a $528 million loan for Fisker Automotive that the company said will move it closer to creating affordable, fuel-efficient plug-in hybrid electric cars.

Actually it’s the tax payers who are funding the leveraged company that has yet to deliver a single plug-in hybrid.

The announcement is the latest step in the Obama Administration’s plan to expand the use of battery power with funding going to not only traditional automakers with track records of delivering electric or hybrid cars, such as General Motors, but risky unproven start-ups, such as Fisker and California-based Tesla Motors – as well as to various companies that claim they can deliver advanced battery technology.

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“This conditional loan represents a significant step in America’s future,” claimed Henrik Fisker, the eponymous founder and chief executive officer of Fisker Automotive, and one-time chief designer of Aston Martin.  “With it Fisker Automotive can rapidly develop affordable clean cars that satisfy our passion for driving and help restore the US as an auto industry leader,” he said.

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