The latest news on Fisker's troubles gets more embarrassing with time.
A new Reuters report just released is causing even further embarrassment to the luxury hybrid carmaker, suggesting that $35,000 went down the crapper for every Karma Fisker built. The huge loss can be attributed to a number of factors, the biggest of which being the Karma was underdeveloped and rushed to market. The report claims there were a number of last-minute fixes and design updates that added millions to the bottom line. In fact, a former Fisker exec admitted that the luxury plug-in hybrid "cost far more to produce than we could ever charge for it."
But instead of working to truly permanently resolve the car's problems, founder and namesake Henrik Fisker ordered his engineering team to stick with the car’s original concept. And here’s where it gets worse: Fisker spent lavishly on PR events when it should have been investing funds (loans from the US government) on fixing the Karma. Turns out that just weeks before the US Department of Energy froze Fisker’s loans, the automaker co-sponsored a pre-race Monte Carlo grand prix party on a 146-foot yacht, which cost up to $100,000 to hold. Guests were served glasses of champagne with flecks of gold inside.
Of course, Henrik Fisker himself was there, working a VIP crowd that included Prince Albert of Monaco. Speaking of Henrik, he and Fisker co-founder Barny Koehler each took home salaries of around $600,000 to $700,000 even as employees were being laid off. Because of this frivolous spending, Fisker had approximately $200 million in unpaid bills by 2011.