For many weeks now the Fisker Karma has been slowly coming out of production. Those cars have been secretly given out to the press for their initial reviews and impressions. We’ll start seeing more of these over the coming weeks. Here are some examples of the quotes you’ll find from your favorite outlets.

Edmunds.com

“The double-wishbone suspension with its forged aluminum arms and self-leveling rear dampers puts the Karma near the top of the sporty premium four-door class in terms of handling characteristics.”

“Interior finish and materials quality are exceptional for this class and there is no cabin more ecologically conceived as this.”

Autoblog.com

Motor Trend

“Whew – Hollywood Can Finally Park its Priuses”

“Quite frankly, the electric car’s scotch-taped-glasses image has waited a century for a guy like Henrik Fisker to come along. His Karma is a jaw-slackening design manifesto from its fangy grill to its turbulent tail.”

Road and Track

“The Karma’s digital instrumentation and 10.2-in. touch-screen are exemplary in clarity and function.”

“It’s extremely well balanced and, to me, more nimble than either a BMW 7 Series or Porsche Panamera—meant as high praise”

“ Indeed the Karma is genuinely lithe, taut, tossable and fun. It’s also plenty quick, whether in Stealth or Sport mode.”

Car and Driver

“Three years and a billion investment dollars after the Fisker Karma rolled forth as a stunning plug-in-hybrid concept, it’s finally ready to rock as a stunning production car. All in less time (and for far less money) than GM needed to produce the Chevy Volt. “

“The Karma’s steering is endowed with real road feel and linear turn-in response. The ride is supple, and there’s minimal body roll when you fling the wheel”

“ Considering its low-slung and curvaceous flanks, the Karma provides surprisingly easy entry and cozy accommodations for four grown-ups.”

“Trim is a cut or two above the $100,000 norm, thanks to fine detailing and lovely custom touches.”

“Some of those who’ve plunked down the cash are doubtless atoning for past turbo-V-8 sins, but others may be less altruistic, simply drawn to the sexiest fenders ever draped over an American sedan. Whatever their motivation, they’ll get a beautiful, luxurious machine that goes easy on the guilt.”

Auto Car

“The car is extremely swift. The Karma has excellent electro-hydraulic steering and an understeer-free chassis that seems to thrive on tight cornering. The car is a joy to drive on a tight handling course”

“Overall, the Karma is an exciting, rewarding but entirely predictable car.”

“The Karma has several vital factors in its favour, not least its stop-the-traffic looks, its thorough engineering, its great driving characteristics and a price that, while high, doesn’t look unrealistic against the competition”

“It could easily become the next must-have automobile among Hollywood’s glitterati.”

Automobile

“the most important car of the year. And for multiple reasons.”

“It’s a $97,000 car with a $97,000 window sticker. The technology is merely a bonus.”

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Sunset in front of Karma
A standout at this year’s L.A. Auto Show is Fisker Automotives’ “Karma.” This plugin hybrid was conceived in Orange County and has a sleek, sexy body. 

Fisker will be rolling the “Karma” into showrooms toward the end of next year.

[Source: myFOXla]

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Fisker, Gore, Finland, Oh my. All these Rumors sure do Fly.WSJ_jpg

It  will come as no surprise to our regular readers that there has been a great deal of misinformation being lauded over the past week. It’s time to start setting the record straight on a few things. Let’s start with the most highly publicized article on the topic.  In the Wall Street Journal’s “Gore-Backed Car Firm Gets Large U.S. Loan.” The bad information begins from the very first sentence.

A tiny car company backed by former Vice President Al Gore has just gotten a $529 million U.S. government loan to help build a hybrid sports car in Finland that will sell for about $89,000.

Here the fact that former Vice President Al Gore is a partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, a primary investor in Fisker Automotive,  makes it sounds as if he wrote the DoE check himself. Historically each of these government funded programs have had enough red tape built into them to prevent any sort of direct access to funds.  It’s easy to say that’s all it took, but this funding has been in to works for a very long time.

The award this week to California startup Fisker Automotive Inc. follows a $465 million government loan to Tesla Motors Inc., purveyors of a $109,000 British-built electric Roadster.

Yes, both companies have halo cars that are much more expensive and are assembled in other countries. It’s called product development. You take new technology that is very expensive and package it up very nicely so that those who choose to value exclusivity over price can purchase a little piece of the future. Then you take all the lessons learned from that venture and role it up into a much more cost effective, much higher volume consumer vehicle.

In this case we now have project Nina, a $40,000 plug-in hybrid vehicle for a mass market. At 100,000 units per year it will have over 6 times the production volume of the Karma. Is it cheap? Not by a long shot. Can it be purchase by many more who value the environmental advantages, most certainly.

From there the article does manage to twist back to a form of reality and get to some of the facts. You can be the judge of how it all works out in the end.

[Source: WSJ Picture: 9to5Mac]

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At its global headquarters in Irvine, California, Fisker Automotive is abuzz with activity. Designers, engineers, clay modelers dedicate their talents and tools to bring the world’s first luxury plug-in hybrid, the Fisker Karma, to life.

[Source: MotorWeek]

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Orange County Register LogoHenrik Fisker brought a special guest along when he spoke at a luncheon in Ivine, CA. this week.  That guest was none other than the Fisker Karma. Just in the past couple of weeks many have seen the car doing the track run at Laguna Seca. However, very few have seen one out on the street. As we can see that is about to change. It appears that Fisker is getting much more comfortable with there currrent version of the production model. Many have questioned if the time has passed for such activities to begin. We say it couldn’t be better.

For the dozens of folks in attendance who saw the car live for the first time, there was a collective gasp of excitement for the car’s sleek lines and luxurious, leather-clad interior.

And this wasn’t just a static display. As the photo-hungry crowd still busily snapped away, Fisker quietly — no, silently — slipped away down the road, in a 400-horsepower luxury beast that he hopes will change the way we see green. Stay tuned for how this electrifying race plays out.

Attendees at the Orange County Forum Luncheon get their First Taste of Karma

Attendees at the Orange County Forum Luncheon get their First Taste of Karma

Of course not one to give up an opportunity Henrik also made time to talk about future production plans and that oh so meaningful DOE loan. As important as a successful launch of the Karma is to Fisker, having the cash to quickly ramp up development of a low cost model is even more.

While speaking at an Orange County Forum luncheon Wednesday in Irvine, Fisker not only showed off a running version of the Karma in person, but also spoke about the ideology of his company and even shed a little — but only a little — more info about another car that the company has in the works.

He said his private company has already received “well over $100 million” in venture capital, and hopes it can obtain a Department of Energy loan to spur production of its next car, which Fisker aims to sell in the $40,000 range.

Fisker declined to reveal what kind of car this lower-cost, higher-volume one would be, but the goal is to eventually make 100,000 units a year, and — unlike the Finnish-built Karma — for them to be made in the United States.

{Read Full Story}

[Source: OC Register]

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