Renowned designer and fledgling automaker Henrik Fisker moved one step closer to taking his premium plug-in hybrid sedan from concept to reality with a new Series C financing round that generated $65 million of additional funding. The money will help support final development of the Fisker Karma, which is slated to begin production sometime in the fourth quarter of 2009 and ultimately ramp up to a maximum of 15,000 units annually.
According to Fisker, CEO of Fisker Automotive, Inc, the world's first luxury plug-in four-door will be able to travel up to 50 miles virtually pollution free on pure electric power using its proprietary Q DRIVE system, which was developed for the firm by Quantum Fuel Systems Technologies Worldwide. For longer trips, the lithium-ion battery in this elegant rear-drive sedan gets recharged on the fly by a small gasoline engine that's supplemented by regenerative braking to extend its per-tank range to over 350 miles. Projected performance numbers for the Karma are equally impressive, with a 0-60 mph time of less than six seconds and a top speed of 125 mph. Although Fisker is based in Irvine, California, the Karma will be assembled in Finland by Valmet Automotive and is expected to have a base price in the $80,000-$85,000 range.