Fisker Hopes to Restart Karma Production "Fairly Soon"
February 8, 2013 12:24 PM
It's waiting on troubled battery maker A123
Fisker Automotive has been waiting on its lithium-ion battery supplier in order to resume Karma production, and while there's no word yet on when that'll happen, Fisker predicts "fairly soon."
Fisker's battery maker for the plug-in Karma is A123 Systems, which
filed for bankruptcy
in October 2012. In December, the company was
acquired by Chinese firm
for about $260 million.
Fisker has been waiting on A123 to come out of this bankruptcy situation before restarting Karma production, but an exact date is unclear at this point.
Fisker has been having money issues of its own, though, and is currently looking for an investor. Some analysts say the company could be acquired.
received $529 million in DOE loans in April 2010. The loans were part of a program to progress development of high-tech vehicles, where Fisker received $169 million for Karma plug-in engineering and $359 million for Nina production. The loans were also meant to revamp a closed General Motors plant in Wilmington, Delaware for Fisker EV production.
However, Fisker fell a little behind on its production schedule, and in May 2011,
DOE froze the loans due to "unmet milestones."
Fisker had only drawn $193 million of it at that point.
In October 2012,
the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee
decided to look into
the original terms of
its loan to Fisker Automotive
, questioning whether DOE will step in to help the electric vehicle (EV) automaker if it goes bankrupt and investors are allowed to retrieve their money.
On top of money issues, Fisker had a few recalls throughout 2012. In March, A123 said it would replace nearly 600 Karma batteries for $55 million when issues occurred. Later, in August, Fisker recalled 2,400 Karmas after a cooling fan issue led to a fire in California.
The Detroit News
"If they're going to pirate somebody, we want it to be us rather than somebody else." -- Microsoft Business Group President Jeff Raikes
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