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Despite Production Delays, Fisker Sells 3,000 Karmas

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On: Tue, Jul 19, 2011 at 10:40AM | By: Chris Weiss

Despite Production Delays, Fisker Sells 3,000 Karmas

It was starting to look like the Fisker Karma was a potential lame duck and market flop. Henrik Fisker's curvy hybrid looked like an innovative contender when it debuted at the 2008 Detroit Motor Show. But after delay upon delay and price undercuts by cars like the Tesla Model S, the Karma seemed like it was bound to flop in the current market.

Fisker announced this week, however, that it's penned in 3,000 preorders and is likely sold out through the end of the year.

"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," explained Henrik Fisker. "They recognize the infrastructure isn't there for electric cars, and see we offer a stylish, stress-free alternative with no range compromises."

That helps to explain why the Karma is selling despite several price increases and production delays. It would seem that customers are as interested in funding green innovation as they are in buying a Karma. Buyers include Leonardo Di Caprio, who will take delivery of the very first Karma, Al Gore and Colin Powell.

Fisker plans to up production at its Valmet, Finland plant from a handful of models per week to about 300 per week later this year. It will likely remain sold out into early 2012.

The Karma has a plug-in hybrid powertrain with two rear-mounted 201-hp electric motors and a 260-hp 2.0-liter turbo four-cylinder engine-generator. The car can travel 50 miles on battery power alone before requiring help from the four-cylinder. Price starts at just under $96,000 (for now).

Fisker has several other models in the works, including a shooting brake Karma variant due to launch at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show.


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