VL Destino = Corvette + Fisker Karma

The VL Destino took a highly tuned Corvette engine and plunked it into the Fisker Karma body. Eco-greenies are probably not too pleased, but at least the VL Destino will not catch on fire like the hybrid Fisker did: 

VL Destino
VL Destino = Corvette engine and Fisker Karma body

I still like the tech of the K-MAX better though. . .

I Get Mail from a Fisker Dealer

Earlier, I wrote about the Fisker Karma, an interesting car with some serious issues. I received a comment from a gentleman named Kjell Bergh:

I drive the most expensive version of the Karma at $112 000, minus $ 7 500 Federal alternative energy credit. The overwhelming consensus ( try 100 per cent) of everybody who stops to talk about the car is that it is in fact gorgeous. It is great fun to drive, especially in stealth mode (battery only), with impressive initial accelleration.

Fisker Karma

It is a brand new company employing advanced new technology in an all- new vehicle which will probably have some pediatric problems. Recall that it took more than three years fir Boeing to bring the dreamliner to market and they didn’t even have to build a new company at the same time.

In looking at the Karma from other angles, I will admit the car has an intriguing look. In the initial shots I posted, the car appeared clumsy. And unappealing.

But I stand by my other comments. Consumer Reports recently had a disaster with their Karma after it broke down during one of their tests:

Ooooh, that is bad Karma.

A six-figure Fisker Karma electrified sedan broke during Consumer Reports check-in period, before the magazine even could begin testing it, delivering another black eye to the struggling automaker.

“Our Fisker Karma cost us $107,850. It is super sleek, high-tech—and now it’s broken,” the magazine lamented in its blog today in an item headlined “Bad Karma.”

As for Mr. Bergh’s other points, I don’t blame him for arguing in favor of the Fisker. He is the CEO of Borton Fisker of Minneapolis. Thanks for visiting Kjell. I would suggest disclosing who you are when you comment on the Karma. (Yes, I  googled you.) Clearly, you have a stake in the Fisker’s success.

I don’t have a horse in the race. I just don’t like seeing my taxes supporting experimental luxury items without my say in the matter.

Fisker Karma, Paperweight?

Wow, today is my lucky day. Look what the Fisker article starts with:

(The) Karma is heavy and it has some technical issues, but who really cares when it looks as gorgeous as this?

After the post below about Paulie Krugman from the DC Sure set, I strike gold in the first line again! Who said blogging was hard? Get a load of the sled. It looks interesting, hardly gorgeous:

The 2012 Fisker Karma

I remember the Fisker from the political hand-wringing and the Al Gorish details. Especially the thing about bailing out a Finnish (almost finished?) company:

If anyone has heard of Fisker, it may not be in the most favourable way. The company has been in the news recently because certain loans have been made available from the U.S. government for “advanced technology” companies; Fisker was in line for some of that money if it met certain criteria for production start dates, etc. It did not meet those criteria, and those funds are currently not in the plan.

Fear not, mean greenies, this road machine, which starts at (gulp) 102K (that’ll break your 401K), has all the extras you need to assure yourself that you are indeed the compassionate soul you have so studiously desired to be. What with your yoga, your tofu, and now this:

Inside, a simple but mostly elegant interior awaits. You have a choice of fabrics, ranging from “sustainable” leather to what I can only call a “vegetarian” option, with no animal products at all.

Interior wood trim comes either from already-fallen trees, trees damaged by fire, or logs rescued from the bottom of Lake Michigan (!). No live trees were harmed in the production of this vehicle.

God forbid you sin and switch to the unpleasant gas (eek) engine:

Things aren’t so serene when that rough old cob of an engine kicks in, which it does in Sport mode, or in Stealth when the batteries are spent. It is loud, and unpleasantly so.

How’s the finish? Lousy for a Finnish car:

There are some fairly major refinement issues in Karma.

When changing from Drive to Reverse and back, as when trying to position the car for a photograph (okay, so that’s just me) the response is slow, and accompanied by various clicks and clunks. Then again, a similar thing happens with some dual clutch gearboxes.

And the gaps between the various composite and aluminum body panels won’t cause any sleepless night at Lexus.

Certainly (Soitenly to any Stooge fans) the Fisker rocks the gas mileage thingy? Nope:

2012 Fisker KarmaThe U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently rated it at just 53 miles per U.S. gallon “equivalent,” which is lower than Chevy Volt or Nissan Leaf. Not really surprising, given it is larger, faster, and so much heavier than both.

But in “range-extended” mode with the engine running, it is rated at only 20 miles per U.S. gallon.

20 mpg? My old Chevy truck got better than that. And you know you are going to slip into gas mode in the Fisk. What a paperweight!

Bottom line: this car is not rolling out the dealer’s lot at less than 120K. And for that price, I want something that slays a 911 or an old Ferrari. And it should cook me dinner. Curry. Tikka Masala. Heck, you can get a tough, new Shelby for half-sies.

The Fisker is not gorgeous. And it has a stupid name. Is it worth buying all that to feel smug? I think I am going to wait until 2014 when Fisk is rolling out the Fisker Vanma. More room, less karma. . .