Consumer Reports’ Fisker Karma Breaks Down Pre-Test

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Consumer Reports reports that during the calibration procedure the car broke down. A flatbed was sent to collect it.

A Fisker Karma has broken down before it even started its formal testing period with the influential magazine Consumer Report. The magazine purchased the car for over $100k at a dealership. While calibrating the car in CR's standard procedure in preparation for a long term test, the car stopped functioning. Attempts to revive it failed and the owners had to call in the dealer to take the car back for repairs.

A flatbed truck arrived at CR's facilities, collected the car and after spending the day in the garage, it was roaring again to go. So far, Fisker gave no technical explanation for the glitch that disabled the range-extending car. CR reported that the car was in their possession for a few days and when the fault happened there were 200 miles on the odometer. They were performing tests for the car when dashboard flashed a message. After that the transmission went into Neutral and didn't engage. In another attempt the same fault occurred and then the retailer was called in to take care of the disabled car.

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"As a new company introducing a new technology into the marketplace, customer satisfaction and a quick and thorough response to any issue is our primary focus," replied Fisker to the mishap. "As part of the Fisker VIP Customer Service program, the local Fisker retailer immediately arranged for the car to be picked up and diagnosed by trained service technicians." Fisker says that over 2,000 Karmas are built to date, and 500 have already been delivered to customers. Last week Fisker appointed Tom La Sorda, former Chrysler CEO and a GM senior executive, as its CEO replacing its founder, Henrik Fisker.

Fisker remains as Executive Chairman of the company. La Sorda's most pressing task is negotiating with the DOE new terms to the loan guarantees. The company used less than $200m of the DOE's loan guarantees out of over $500m that were approved, after it did not meet milestones in its development program.

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