Fisker’s Bill Tally & Henrik Fisker on the 2012 Fisker Karma on Driving the Nation

William “Bill” Tally, Director of Vehicle Integration at Fisker Automotive took time to talk to Lou Ann Hammond, CEO, www.drivingthenation.com, about the 2012 Fisker Karma.

The Fisker Karma is beautiful, it can go fast and it doesn’t have to use gas unless you want it to. Is the Fisker Karma extended range the same as a Chevy Volt? Does the Karma have a CVT?

I talked to Henrik Fisker, CEO and Founder of Fisker Automotive, about the dealers, China and the Middle East. Will Fisker export cars from the United States to China and the Middle East? The Chinese group Fisker is working with is called China Grand Auto. Fisker’s luxury plug-in hybrid vehicles will be sold in key markets across the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) through key retailer outlets operated by Al-Futtaim Group.

Al-Futtaim has more than 70 years of experience running automotive dealer networks and is a leading distributor for world-renowned brands across the MENA region, including Lexus, Volvo, Jeep, Toyota, Hino, Dodge, Honda, and Chrysler. Len Hunt is the President-Automotive, Al-Futtaim. Hunt used to be the President of Kia Motors America.
The Fisker Karma has two driving modes
Tally talks about The Fisker Karma being the first, and only car, that allows the driver to manually select all-electric or hybrid-electric drive modes on demand.

The default mode, known as Stealth mode uses the lithium-ion battery power before switching to the gas engine that drives a generator. According to Fisker, the Karma can accelerate from zero to 60 mph (97 km/h) in 7.9 seconds and achieve a top speed of 95 mph in stealth mode.

Sport mode is what I call horsepower mode. With a single flip of the Karma’s left-hand steering wheel paddle you are in horsepower mode. The gasoline engine activates the generator that activates the lithium-ion battery for maximum power and performance. Tally says this procedure creates enough electricity for 403 total system horsepower, allowing the Karma to accelerate from 0-to-60 mph in just 6.3 seconds and achieve a top speed of 125 mph in sport mode.

Ecochic

According to Fisker’s press release:
Sustainability is Beautiful
Fisker Automotive’s Sustainable and Accountable Design philosophy is apparent throughout the Karma’s cabin, exemplified by the use of reclaimed, recycled and reusable materials.

Fisker leads the luxury category by offering the most sustainability-conscious interior in it’s top-line EcoChic package. The exclusive EcoChic series replaces leather with a high-grade textile and Premium EcoSuede trim.

Leather for the mid-line EcoSport model is sourced from the world’s first energy-self-sufficient, closed-loop leather manufacturing plant; both gas and electricity are generated on-site from by-products of the leather making.

Hides are purchased exclusively from suppliers that adopt the Five Freedoms set of principles for humane animal treatment. The processing is low-pigmentation and chrome-free, greatly reducing environmental impact. Yield is the highest in the industry, which means fewer hides are used. Each Karma EcoSport interior has it’s own unique texture and appearance; no two are the same.

The Karmas water-based paint process releases no volatile organic compounds (VOC). Optional Diamond Dust paint “ another world first “ contains a high glass flake mixture that leads the industry in reflectivity, shine and gloss.

Equipment and Technical Specifications

Equipment
All Karma trim levels are powered by Fisker EVer (Electric Vehicle extended range) dual mode powertrain consisting of:
Motors Two rear-mounted electric traction motors, mid-mounted lithium ion battery pack and front/mid-mounted range-extending gasoline engine/generator set
Battery: 20 kWh, 180 kW lithium ion w/Nanophosphate technology (A123 Systems)
Range-extending gasoline Engine/Generator set:
2.0-liter, 260hp, low-emission, four-cylinder direct fuel-injection w/ turbocharger () and 175 kW generator
Traction motors: 403 hp (300 kW) total

[2 x 201.5 hp (150 kW)] Torque: 959 lb.-ft (1300 Nm) @ 0 rpm
Transmission: Single-ratio gearbox/Limited Slip Differential combination
On-board battery recharging system w/standard 110v plug (available 220V charging). Solar roof converts radiated power from the sun into stored electric energy, effectively increasing the electric range.

Performance
Stealth Mode:
Lithium-ion battery power only
0-60mph (97 km/h) = 7.9 sec
Top Speed = 95mph (153 km/h)
Sport Mode:
Lithium-ion power with Engine/Generator
0-60mph (97km/h) = 6.3 sec
Top Speed = 125mph (201 km/h) electronically limited
Range: Total Range: Up to 300 miles (483 km)
Up to 50 miles (80km) electric only
Up to 250 miles (403 km) extended range

About the Author:

Lou Ann Hammond is the CEO of Carlist and Driving the Nation. She is the co-host of Real Wheels Washington Post carchat every Friday morning and is the Automotive, energy correspondent for The John Batchelor Show and a Contributor to Automotive Electronics magazine headquartered in Korea. Hammond is a member of the North American Car and Truck of the Year (NACTOY), Women's World Car of the Year (WWCOTY), and the Concept Car of the Year.