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Posts Tagged ‘fisker plug-in’

Fisker Offers Official Look at New Atlantic Plug-In

But details, including production timing, remain elusive.

by on Apr.04, 2012

The first official pic of the Fisker Atlantic plug-in hybrid.

Henrik Fisker, founder of the eponymous Fisker Automotive, was clearly searching for something new to reveal during an evening news conference the night before the formal opening of the 2012 New York Auto Show.  The problem is that much of what he had hoped to say – and then some – leaked out in the days leading up to the event.

The most important detail confirmed by the Danish designer-cum-automaker was that the second Fisker product line will be dubbed the Atlantic if it ever gets into production.  Make that “when” it gets to production, Fisker asserted, insisting that the California start-up’s problems locking down a Department of Energy loan it thought it already had will not stop its ambitious plans.

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Fisker belatedly reached market with the bigger and decidedly more expensive Karma earlier this year.  But problems bringing it to showrooms led the DoE to withdraw the loan after the company had only been able to draw down about 35% of it.  While new Chief Executive Officer Tom LaSorda is continuing discussions with the government, he told that Fisker Automotive is moving ahead with alternative plans to raise money privately to replace the DoE funds.


Former Chrysler Chief LaSorda Now Fisker CEO

“They didn’t have to twist my arm.”

by on Feb.28, 2012

Former Chrysler Chief LaSorda will now serve as CEO at Fisker Automotive.

Former Chrysler CEO Tom LaSorda is back in the saddle, albeit one with a relatively silent source of power, as the new chief executive of battery-car start-up Fisker Automotive.

LaSorda, who had been serving as advisor and vice chairman of the California-based company will step into day-to-day management replacing founder Henrik Fisker as CEO.  The Danish-born Fisker will continue to serve as executive chairman and as the company’s design chief.

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The 57-year-old LaSorda will have plenty of challenges ahead of him.  Fisker Automotive is months behind with the launch of its first product, the plug-in Karma sports car, and it is struggling to renegotiate $528 million in federal loans needed to complete the development and production launch of the maker’s next product, a more mainstream plug-in model codenamed Project Nina.


First Drive: 2012 Fisker Karma

Will motorists plug into the battery sports car?

by on Feb.15, 2012

Late to market, Fisker is finally rolling out the Karma plug-in hybrid sports car.

If you want to go green expect to pay a significant penalty in terms of range, performance and price – or so goes the conventional wisdom.  But when former Aston Martin designer Henrik Fisker set out to develop the eponymous Fisker Karma, nearly four years ago, he was determined to bring a high-styled, high-performance sports car to market “that would require no trade-offs.”

After a series of setbacks and delays, the first of his plug-in hybrids are beginning to roll into showrooms in the U.S. and Europe and production is steadily ramping up, the Finnish factory now turning out as many as 25 Karma sports cars a day.  So we jumped at an offer to take one of the first of the 4-door plug-ins for a spin around Los Angeles, this week.


One thing is certain: Henrik Fisker hasn’t lost his touch as a designer.  The new Karma is as pleasant to look at, and just as sexy, as one of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit models. It’s sleek and modern, with a shape that seems to be in motion even when parked.  During nearly 100 miles of driving we received frequent thumbs up from motorists pulling up alongside in everything from a beat-up Ford F-150 to a well-heeled Aston DB9 – ironically one of Fisker’s earlier projects.


With DoE Loan in Jeopardy, Fisker Preps “Plan B”

Start-up maker “confident” it can survive, thrive without government help.

by on Feb.14, 2012



Henrik Fisker with one of the first Karma plug-in hybrids. will offer the first full review of the new Fisker Karma on Wednesday. Make sure to come back.

Though California battery-car start-up Fisker Automotive continues to struggle to come up with a plan that will satisfy the Department of Energy and help it regain access to a promised, low-interest $528 million loan, Fisker’s founder said he is “confident” the company can move ahead even if it means tapping into the private equity market.

Earlier this month, Fisker revealed it would idle more than 65 workers at its suburban Los Angeles headquarters and Delaware assembly plant due to delays in the negotiations with the DoE.  But the maker countered reports that said it was halting production of its first plug-in hybrid model, the Fisker Karma.


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If anything, production is now ramping up, said the maker’s founder, Henrik Fisker, during a series of conversations that accompanied the first full media drive of the 4-seat Karma sports car. But while the Karma was designed to get Fisker  Automotive noticed, the bigger challenge will be to bring the maker’s next product, codenamed Project Nina, to market. And that is going to require significant infusions of cash, he cautioned.


Fisker Recall Triggered by Potential Battery Fire

Impacts entire initial run of plug-in hybrids now on the road.

by on Dec.30, 2011

The Fisker Karma is recalled due to a potential battery fire problem.

In a potentially embarrassing turn of events, the California-based battery-car start-up Fisker Automotive will recall all of the cars it has sold so far due to a potential defect that could cause the $102,000 Fisker Karma plug-in hybrids to catch fire.

The problem is only remotely similar to the issue believed to have caused several fires involving Chevrolet Volt plug-ins after they were tested by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.  An improperly installed hose clamp, Fisker said, can result in the leak of coolant that could, in turn, short out the Karma’s lithium-ion battery pack.

“If coolant enters the battery compartment, an electric short could occur,” a notice on the NHTSA website says, “possibly resulting in a fire.”

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As a result of the defect Fisker will recall 232 of the plug-in hybrid sports cars to repair the clamp.  But less than 50 are actually in the hands of owners following a slower-than-expected launch of the Karma – which is assembled at a plant in Finland then shipped to the United States.  Spokesman Roger Ormischer indicated there have been no reports of any problems with the vehicles that have already been sold.


Fisker Launches Surf Shooting Brake

Second plug-in hybrid aimed at boogy boarders with bucks.

by on Sep.15, 2011

Fisker's Surf offers a more functional take on the California start-up's new plug-in hybrid.

Just weeks after delivering its first plug-in hybrid to actor Leonardo Di Caprio, Fisker is ready to roll out an all-new version of its coupe-like Karma sedan.

The new Fisker Surf offers an alternate take with a distinctly European flair that some might be tempted to compare to Ferrari’s new FF shooting brake – which can be found a few stands down at this year’s Frankfurt Motor Show.

The sporty design is likely to connect with buyers on the Continent, where wagons remain extremely popular but, in fact, the name, Surf, suggests that Fisker’s design team had California in mind.  The new model is now big enough to conceal a surfboard.

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That’s good news considering one of the biggest complaints about the Karma is the lack of a useful trunk, its cargo compartment measuring a meager 7.1 cubic feet.  The Surf nearly doubles that, at 12.7 cf, and with the rear seat down it jumps to 29.0.


Karma Set to Launch, Fisker Ready to Risk Everything

Production of Karma plug-in begins this month.

by on Mar.10, 2011

Henrik Fisker at his stand in Geneva.

More than three years after announcing plans to produce a high-performance plug-in hybrid, Danish designer-cum-entrepreneur Henrik Fisker is ready to put his money – and a half billion dollars of U.S. taxpayer cash – where his mouth is.

The sleek Fisker Karma coupe officially goes into production on March 21st, after several earlier delays.  How it fares could reveal whether the automotive market is open to new players, like Fisker Automotive, ready to challenge the traditional industry order by focusing on environmentally-friendly powertrain technology.

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These days, there are dozens of automotive wannabes hoping to cash in on the green movement.  They’ve collectively raised billions from investors and entrepreneurs who believe this is the first real opening since the U.S. automotive ranks began to dwindle during the Great Depression.  And some have been able to count on the help of the federal treasury, the Obama Administration approving billions of dollars in loans and grants intended to promote electric propulsion.

The situation “is similar to 100 years ago when we moved from the horse and buggy but the choice between steam, electric and gasoline wasn’t clear yet,” suggests Fisker, who first made a name for himself as a designer of high-performance sports cars like the Aston Martin DB9.