Of all the
electric and hybrid vehicles on the market today (or that have been announced),
one of the sexiest designs is the Fisker Karma. This car isn't a pure EV and
has more in common with the Volt than the Prius. The Karma runs off batteries
and when those batteries are depleted, it uses a 2-liter turbocharged
four-cylinder engine to recharge the batteries and power the car on extended
The car gets its motivation through a pair of
rear-mounted electric motors, while the gasoline engine provides 260 hp. Fisker
has announced that the first
Karma will be delivered to superstar Leonardo di Caprio. Di
Caprio might be getting the first of the Karma's off the assembly line, but he
is far from the only famous person on the list to purchase the Karma. Other
well-known buyers of the Karma include Al Gore and Colin Powell.
Fisker currently has the capacity to build five of
the Karma's each week at the Valmet production plant. Starting in November, the
vehicles will be built at a rate of 300 units per week. So far, Fisker says
that it has received 3,000 pre-orders for the Karma and expects to be sold out
until early 2012. The car is expected to sell for $100,000.
Henrik Fisker said, "Our sales are split
50:50 between early-adopting car enthusiasts and total non-car enthusiasts who
just like that we are bringing something totally new to market. They recognize
the infrastructure isn't there for electric cars, and see we offer a stylish,
stress-free alternative with no range compromises."
Fisker will have other versions of the Karma
coming as well. The coupe or saloon in the UK that are familiar with will also
be joined by convertible and "shooting-brake" model. Shooting-brake
is a body style that has coupe lines and a hatchback along the lines of the
Karma production kicked off in March.