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Fisker Karma
Fisker Automotive's Karma dazzles in Detroit

DailyTech first brought you details on Fisker Automotive's Hybrid Premium Sports Sedan (HPSS) in late October. The hybrid four-door generated a lot of interest around the web for its sleek design and claimed fuel economy.

The North American International Auto Show, which is currently taking place in Detroit, is the staging ground for more information on Fisker's gorgeous concept. The HPSS is now known as the Karma. Fisker also revealed that the Karma's propulsion system will work similarly to the Chevrolet Volt.

In addition to being a plug-in hybrid, the Karma uses a small internal combustion engine (ICE) to recharge a lithium-ion battery pack -- the ICE provides no forward momentum. The Karma can travel 50 miles on battery power alone before the ICE kicks in.

Fisker says that the powerful electric motors used in its Karma are good enough to propel the Karma to 60 MPH within 5.8 seconds. Top speed is a lofty 125 MPH.

"The car we're showing in Detroit is not your usual show car," said Henrik Fisker, CEO of Fisker Automotive. "It's actually a preview of the production car you can buy."

According to the Wall Street Journal, Fisker Automotive has the backing of venture-capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers -- the firm has backed famous companies like Google and "We have all the capital we need to move forward according to the plan," said Fisker. "We're still going to raise money later in the year, but we don't see that as a big issue."

The Fisker Karma will be priced at $80,000 and the company envisions sales of 15,000 units per year. Expect deliveries of the Karma to begin in late 2009 or early 2010.

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RE: this
By Alexstarfire on 1/14/2008 5:20:18 PM , Rating: 1
Another typical American in here. Where the hell can you legally drive more than 80 MPH anyways, in the US? NOWHERE. Stop bitching about the top speed when you'll never fucking use it anyways. Sure, 125MPH is no Lambo or Corvette, but it's plenty of speed.

RE: this
By nitrous9200 on 1/14/2008 5:40:11 PM , Rating: 2
Second of all, who the hell actually goes over 80mph except in Germany. You are the wanker if you actually buy a car based on the top speed when you will NEVER actually go that fast on a public road.

That's kinda what he said.

RE: this
By hubajube on 1/14/2008 7:24:50 PM , Rating: 2
Another typical American in here. Where the hell can you legally drive more than 80 MPH anyways, in the US? NOWHERE.
Another typical "I'm am better than you because I live outside the US" waffle-eating hypocrite. Just because it's not legal to drive over 80 mph doesn't mean it doesn't get done. I'm 99.9% certain you've gone over the speed limit in your respective country.

RE: this
By kenji4life on 1/14/2008 10:05:32 PM , Rating: 2
Personally I think that the term "sports car" gets tossed around quite a bit. A Civic Si, Mazda Miata, etc are all sporty cars and have attributes that set them apart from other models of the same brand. This might make them enough of a sports car to the person purchasing them, whether it be physical appearance, ability to go 0-60 or 60-0 in short amounts of time, or just the overall "feel" of the car.

My own personal definition of a sports car? Good control, sub 7 second 0-60 time, and some amount of styling, among other things. Does this car fit into this category? Yes, of course it does. But so does a Taurus SHO. Neither car comes to mind when you say "sports car" though. Most people think of a Corvette, Porsche, or some exotic car with an animal on the front.

By the way, I can happily say that I have safely tested the top speed of almost every car I've owned or driven on a regular basis, including my Maxima (>140mph), a Honda CR-V (~140mph), a Ford Aerostar (>130mph), a GMC Sierra (>100MPH), and quite a few other cars that escape me at the moment. I had control over these cars at the time, but that certainly doesn't make them sports cars.

To each their own.

RE: this
By FITCamaro on 1/15/2008 7:01:35 AM , Rating: 2
On I-95 which runs up and down the east coast, 80 mph is considered an average speed. I typically do 80 mph on it. But often, you need to pass people who are going slower in the fast lane.

In certain parts of the country, people are doing 100+ on the freeway and if you're not, you're likely to cause an accident. Unlike Europe we've got stretches of 100+ miles where there's nothing and people typically go as fast as they feel comfortable going.

So no, there is no places where its legal to go over 80, but that hardly means there aren't places where a lot of people do. Hell, the other night I was doing 70 on the highway in Charleston. Speed limit was 60. I got passed by a cop doing 80. Speed limits mean nothing unless there's traffic. And when there's traffic, if everyone is doing 10-15 over, the cops just look for those excessively speeding over everyone else or driving wrecklessly. In Orlando, the speed limit on I-4 is 55 typically. You're going to get hit if you're doing under 65. Even the cops are doing 75-80 at times.

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