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Fisker Karma  (Source: Motor Authority)

The Fisker Karma makes an appearance in California.   (Source: Ethermax)
Apparently Fisker has several new models planned...

Fox News' previous commentary about Fisker Automotive may have been a bit skewed and inaccurate (Fox show hosts tried to claim Fisker was not a U.S. firm -- blatantly wrong), but Fox's latest take of Fisker is not only much more accurate, but also caught a humorous and significant gaff.  Apparently Vice President Joe Biden accidentally revealed Fisker's entire upcoming lineup -- including unannounced vehicles that Fisker indicates it wasn't exactly planning to reveal quite yet.

VP Biden tipped Fisker's hand at the official announcement ceremony for Fisker's new Delaware plant, an old GM factory which was shut down and sold through GM's bankruptcy holding.  Speaking to reporters, Fox News notes that Biden said, "Imagine when this factory, when the floor we’re standing on right now is making 100,000 plug-in hybrid sedans, coupes and crossovers every single year."

The only problem was that the coupes and crossovers were supposed to be a surprise announcement for a later date.  However, good secrets seldom seem to be able to be kept and the Vice President unwittingly let the cat out of the bag.  Interviewed after the announcement, company founder and CEO Henrik Fisker commented, "[Laughter] He definitely told what our product plans are."

Aside from the leak, plenty more juicy details were revealed officially in the interview session following the announcements.  Fisker revealed that the first vehicles to come from the plant will be the previously announced sedan, which is dubbed Nina.  Fisker is targeting a price of
$40,000 for the vehicle after state and federal tax credits are taken into account, similar to the expected sticker for the 2011 Chevy Volt.  Production will start in 2012, and the vehicle will recycle the sporty powertrain from Fisker's flagship electric sports sedan, Karma.

Reportedly, the stylings of the Nina, named after the ship Christopher Columbus used in his triumphant return to Europe, are very attractive for a mass-market EV.  Government officials were briefed on the design and apparently were impressed, something that helped them reach the decision to grant the company a $528.7M USD DOE loan to buy and retool the shuttered plant.

Describes Mr. Fisker, "
It’s going to have a very exciting radical design.  We actually just showed it to the vice president of the United States of America and he said ‘it looks like a four-door Ferrari, I can’t believe it’s only going to be $40,000.’" 

The Karma will begin production next year at Valmet in Finland and will be imported into the U.S. and sold for approximately $80,000 after tax credits.  Then in 2016 a second generation Karma will be launched, and production will shift to the retooled Delaware plant, according to Mr. Fisker.  Mr. Fisker confirmed that the first generation Karma will get 67 mpg and travel 50 miles in all-electric mode.  He says some drivers will be able to reach 100 mpg or more, depending on how they drive.

Mr. Fisker also revealed that the Karma will feature "stealth" and "sport" modes which allow the user to manually switch on or off the gas engine for more performance, something not known to be offered in the Chevy Volt.  Even once the battery is depleted, Mr. Fisker states that the gas engine is almost equally efficient at delivering power to the electric motors as the battery system.

A prototype Karma was glimpsed at the
California's Laguna Seca raceway, running laps.  That has been the vehicle's only live appearance so far, outside of auto shows.  No journalist has yet taken the intriguing electric sports sedan out for a spin -- yet.


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Green car
By Schadenfroh on 10/30/2009 9:24:55 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Fisker is targeting a price of $40,000 for the vehicle after state and federal tax credits are taken into account, similar to the expected sticker for the 2011 Chevy Volt.


So, when are we going to have a Volt like car for < $30,000 that does not rely on government subsidies to keep the price down? The price of the batteries the main thing holding it back?

I would like being able to charge up at the apartment, much more convient. However, I would need the premium to pay for itself in fuel savings over a reasonable amount of time.




RE: Green car
By xprojected on 10/30/2009 10:20:40 AM , Rating: 3
"So, when are we going to have a Volt like car for < $30,000 that does not rely on government subsidies to keep the price down? The price of the batteries the main thing holding it back?"

Two words: Chinese batteries.


RE: Green car
By Plugers on 10/30/2009 11:30:53 AM , Rating: 2
While I have excess Gov spending, if the biggest cost is batteries why don't they take the subsidy and spend it on battery research into a high capacity (with high charge/discharge rates) made with common materials and is capable of being produced with somewhat inexpensive means.

Then it would help many industries.

On that note I believe we are stupid for getting away from manufacturing in the US, intelligence can be outsourced much more easily than a company making a physical product.


RE: Green car
By brybir on 10/30/2009 12:20:03 PM , Rating: 2
People say we have "moved away" from manufacturing but its not true. We take incidental examples as proof that we do not have manufacturing here anymore.

Take a look at: http://www.bls.gov/fls/chartbook2009/chart5.9.pdf

The United States is far and away the world's largest manufacturing country.

Then take a look at:
http://www.bls.gov/fls/chartbook2009/chart3.7.pdf

Then, with those in mind, take a look at:
http://www.bls.gov/fls/chartbook2009/chart5.4.pdf

So we cant really say that the United States has moved out of manufacturing, as the US is still by and large the world's largest manufacturing economy. Maybe this will not be true in 20 years, but it will be true for the near future.

As to your comment about exporting intelligence I think that is just your perception. What is harder to export in your opinion: the intelligence of thousands of engineers needed to build intel's newest i5/i7 processors or the knowledge ofability to build a foundry facility to produce the chips themselves? Not an easy choice in any means but my bet would be on that it is harder to export the intelligence than locating a physical plant.


RE: Green car
By Spuke on 10/30/2009 2:01:20 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
People say we have "moved away" from manufacturing but its not true. We take incidental examples as proof that we do not have manufacturing here anymore.
LOL! See, those with agendas have once again clouded the truth. You have just proven this by posting FACTS about the US manufacturing capability. Why are we lead to believe our manufacturing base is non-existant when we CLEARLY


RE: Green car
By Spuke on 10/30/2009 2:04:36 PM , Rating: 1
<Sigh>Ok, let's try this again.

LOL! See, those with agendas have once again clouded the truth. You have just proven this by posting FACTS about the US manufacturing capability. Why are we lead to believe our manufacturing base is non-existent when we CLEARLY still lead? News = Joke. Polarization leads to an ignorant public. We really need to find this information for ourselves. Thanks to the OP for finding and posting this information.


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