Fisker Appoints New CEO, Eliminates Battery/Engine Compartment as Causes for Fire
August 14, 2012 10:49 PM
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Fisker's new CEO Tony Posawatz
Tony Posawatz is replacing Tom LaSorda after only six months as Fisker CEO
After only six months of service and a laundry list of troubles, Fisker Automotive's CEO has been booted from his position.
Tom LaSorda, who was named CEO of Fisker back in February 2012 when founder Henrik Fisker stepped down, is leaving the company, but will still be an adviser. He is being replaced by Tony Posawatz, who was the former head of
production for General Motors.
Posawatz has 30 years of experience at General Motors, and was a large part of bringing the Volt from concept to production.
"We are delighted to be adding an executive of Tony's caliber to the Fisker Automotive leadership team," said Fisker. "His depth of knowledge and experience in this innovative field of new technology means that he is one of the world's most experienced leaders in vehicle electrification technology and the plug-in ecosystem. In the long-term, he will ensure that Fisker is well positioned to maximize the potential of not only
the Karma sedan
, but also bring the Fisker Atlantic smoothly to market."
Just last week,
Fisker had its second incident where a Karma plug-in caught fire
while in the possession of a customer. The first occurred only four months sooner in a customer's garage in Houston, causing a house fire.
Last week's incident happened in a Woodside, California grocery store parking lot while the customer was inside shopping. When he came outside, his Karma was on fire and had to be put out by the Woodside Fire Department. There was considerable damage to the vehicle.
There are many speculations as to how the fire started, such as issues with
the lithium ion battery
(which the company had to recall in December 2011) and the "crowded" engine compartment/exhaust routing method.
Fisker recently confirmed that none of these rumors are true. The automaker has started investigating the cause of the Woodside fire, and while there is no set conclusion yet, it has ruled out those possible sources.
"The area of origin for the fire was determined to be outside the engine compartment," said Fisker in a statement. "There was no damage to the passenger compartment and there were no injuries.
"Continued investigative efforts will be primarily focused within the specific area of origin, located forward on the driver's side front tire. Further details will be announced after a full report is completed."
In addition to Karma-related issues, Fisker has had troubles with its Atlantic hybrid, which
may have to be built outside of the United States
because of its lack of access to government funds.
In April 2010, California-based Fisker Automotive received a total of $529 million from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) for clean vehicles, but in May 2011, DOE froze its loans after
delivery of the Karma plug-in was delayed and ended up falling behind schedule. DOE said Fisker did not meet the milestones previously promised, and since then, Fisker has not been able to access the DOE loans.
The loans were also meant to revamp a closed General Motors plant in Wilmington, Delaware for Fisker auto production. So far, Fisker has drawn down $193 million from its loans, but there's a chance that the company may never see the rest of it.
In February 2012, Fisker was forced to
lay off 26 factory workers at the Delaware plant
In addition to the CEO shake-up, Fisker appointed Joe Chao to executive vice president and CEO of Fisker China and Asia. Also, Alberto Gonzalez was named vice president of Manufacturing.
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RE: Fresh, New, Different
8/16/2012 7:07:01 AM
I'll ignore your ad-hominem response and respond to what you think is substance. First, one of your links is to an article from May, 2006 - OVER SIX YEARS AGO. Gasoline consumption peaked in 2007 and has been in decline since, and so have the federal taxes received from them. You other link is only for "STATE" and "LOCAL" taxes. The oil subsidies that I'm talking about are on the federal level, in the form of accelerated depreciation, royalty relief, etc, and the over $100 billion annual military expenditures to secure areas of the world where we get our oil.
Here's a good link to a study on direct subsidies to all energy (including 'alternative energy'):
But even this study doesn't come close to explaining all the expenses associated with oil, namely the military expense that we as a nation pay in money and lives.
From moderate Republican and former Presidential Candiate Jon Huntsman:
"...when you factor in the deployment costs, when you factor in keeping the sea lanes open for the importation of oil. By the way, the Europeans derive a benefit from that as well. When you factor in the terminaling and handling and storage costs, it’s not $3 or $4 or $5 a gallon. It’s $13 a gallon.
If Americans were to stop and just do the math and figure out what it costs this country on a fully loaded basis, they’d be running for cover. They’d say that $300 billion transfer of wealth from the United States to countries that are dangerous and unpredictable - those days are over. I mean, those days have got to be over."
Not only do you suck at Obama's teet at twice the level of Volt-owners, you are an OPEC supporter! If you:
1. Have a car in your household
2. Park that car within 50 feet of an electrical outlet.
3. Have not bought a plug-in vehicle (Chevy Volt, Nissan Leaf, Prius Plug-in).
You are an OPEC Supporter.
Take an average person driving 15,000 miles a year, and replace a car in their household with a plug-in vehicle. The average mpg for a U.S. car is ~23 mpg. In 15,000 miles, you would use over 650 gallons of gas, 25% of which is sourced from OPEC nations. At a conservative $3.50/gallon, that means $568 of your money was used to pay for OPEC-sourced gas. Cut out some money for refining and taxes, and you still have given over $400 in the last year to OPEC regimes.
Now replace that car with a Chevy Volt. With an average electric-only range of 38 miles, it will take you 13,780 miles if you plug in just once a day. That leaves 1,220 miles on gas at 37 mpg for 33 gallons of gas. Do the math, and the Chevy Volt driver has seen his OPEC donation drop from over $400/year to about $20/year.
That is almost exactly what happened to me. I used only 42 gallons of gas, with no lifestyle changes, in my first year of Volt ownership. My previous car averaged 24 mpg (rated 22/32), so I saw my OPEC support drop from around $400/year to less than $30.
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