Car and Driver’s contributing editor Csaba Csere takes the 2012 Fisker Karma out for a test drive as well as chatting with Henrik Fisker about the first car from his company. The Karma has always been kind of a oddity in the electric vehicle world because Henrik Fisker comes from a design background. When you listen to Elon Musk talk about Tesla’s cars, the focus is always on technological innovations and engineering. During Fisker’s interview with Csere, they discuss how the Karma has larger wheels and rides lower than other cars in the category. Csaba has to talk about the vehicle architecture, power, range and mileage on his own later in the video. In many ways that demonstrates the things I dislike about the Karma. Yes the car looks great, but is being ugly the main reason EV’s don’t have social acceptability?
The problem is that many of the important engineering aspects of the Karma took a back seat to it’s styling. The car is massively expensive yet weighs as much as a Chevy Tahoe and gets mid 20’s mpg when the Ecotec engine is recharging the batteries on the go. Csere says the drivetrain feels unrefined to boot. That means that beyond making a fashion statement, there is no real incentive for somebody to spend the extra money for the Karma over a regular luxury car that costs far less. That’s why I don’t see Fisker’s customer base extending very far beyond Hollywood movie stars. The worst part about the way Fisker has developed this car is that it reinforces all of the worst stereotypes about electric vehicles being expensive and mediocre technology that taxpayers have footed the bill for.
Source: CAR and DRIVER on YouTube