We give you an advanced look at the new Fisker Karma, a plug-in hybrid sports car which debuts later today in Detroit.
We got an advanced look at the Fisker Karma, a new four-door plug-in hybrid sports sedan. Fisker will present the car at the North American International Auto Show at 1:10pm Detroit time.
Fisker Automotive is a partnership between Fisker Coachbuild, a company which released the SL55 AMG-based Fisker Tramonto, and Quantum Technologies, an expert in hybrid powertrains. The Fisker Karma is their first vehicle produced as a joint venture.
And it is most certainly a beautiful machine. No surprise here, since the team behind Fisker designed the Aston Martin DB9 and V8 Vantage, as well as the BMW Z8 Roadster. The Karma's body is made mostly out of aluminum, and is shaped to be roughly the same lenth as a Mercedes CLS, wide as a BMW 7-series, and tall as a Porsche 911.
This may sound like an odd combination, but Fisker may be on to something. The powertrain team was in on the design from the start, insuring the Karma's battery pack would be able to be mounted at the dead center point between the two axels.
Also available on the exterior is a solar-panel roof. The roof would be dual-purpose: providing daytime charging for the vehicle, but also running the climate control when the Karma is parked. This way, the car will never get incredibly hot inside when it waits under the sun.
The sports car also can travel up to 50 miles on battery power alone. The plug-in system works in tandem with a small, gasoline engine that powers a generator, delivering more energy to the electric motor. This electric motor gets the Karma from 0-60mph in under six seconds, and reaches a top speed of 125 mph. It reaches maximum torque immediately, enabling good acceleration on the rear-wheel-drive car. Regenerative brakes also store energy normally lost through braking and deceleration.
Inside, the owner finds lots of luggage space, as well as a spacious interior compartment, even for the rear passengers. Each passenger gets their own "first class" seat, while those sitting in back are treated to a DVD system. Sat-nav is also included.
Of the car, CEO Henrik Fisker said. "Our hope is that the Fisker Karma will be the start of a new trend in the automotive business – less concession with more efficiency."
The Karma is slated for a 15,000 production run, with the first 99 being signed and numbered by Henrik Fisker. That first set of cars will also have the same trim and color as the vehicle on display today at the NAIAS.
The new Fisker Karma has a base price of $80,000, and goes on sale today at their stand in Detroit. Delivery will begin at the end of this year.