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I know they're near death, but I don't know why. Bad product, or marketing, or?? Weren't they an equal with Tesla at one time? Tesla seems to be doing pretty well now.
 

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I know they're near death, but I don't know why. Bad product, or marketing, or?? Weren't
Mostly just a bad product, with better alternatives available. The Karma is as gorgeous as any car out there, but beyond that it really didn't have much to offer.

Karma vs. Volt:

3x the cost of the Volt.
In electric-only mode the Karma is no faster than a Volt.
Less passenger room than the Volt.
Way less cargo room than the Volt.

Karma vs. Model S:

Karma is more expensive.
Karma had a really crappy center console.
Way, WAY slower than a Model S.
Way less room than a Model S.


Add in a couple of real-world fires with the Karma (not user-caused - just parked Karmas), and the obituary was written.
 

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maybe limited dealership network with poor placement. all of chicagoland has 2 fisker dealers 10 miles appart. might have been a real high entry level price (even compared to tesla s60) and a major recall for fires.
 

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Fisker was based on looks, not substance. Very little of the technology was theirs, although there are reportedly quite a few IP patents for the tech for the Atlantic.
From descriptions I have heard they basically crammed in the mechanics of the car very tightly. Looks took priority over the engineering. The Volts drivetrain in much better engineered than the Karma's was.
Add to that, Tesla was able to find partnerships with big players (Toyota, Diamler, Panasonic) and, although they stumbled at times, were able to make important landmarks to allow them to continue to draw on the government loans.
There are lots of other differences, but I think those are the biggest.

He is a good article on it.
http://gigaom.com/2013/04/02/tesla-...ave-been-a-tale-of-two-electric-car-startups/
 

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Fisker really has had a lot of bad Karma :p

Their cars had actually sold rather well but a perfect storm of issues have hit them hard.

They got a lot of bad publicity when one of their cars at consumer reports died. It died due to a battery fault caused by poor welding of contacts of the battery cells by A123 systems. 1/3 of all Karma's built up to that date had their batteries affected by this issue and it caused great cost to Fisker and A123 systems (part of the reason A123 went bankrupt).

Many of the Karma's are built in Finland and shipped to a port in New Jersey. This port was hit hard by Hurricane Sandy and many Karma's were destroyed. Insurance didn't cover the loss and I believe there is a law suit currently in progress about this. I believe at this time A123 was also shut down because of their bankruptcy so Fisker wasn't able to produce cars. So their inventory and deliveries took a massive hit.

Also there was a big story about a Fisker that caught fire. It wasn't battery related but it did bring some bad press to Fisker.
 

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In a nutshell...not enough funding (or investors with funding).

With enough money, anyone can make and sell anything. They grew too fast and spent a lot of money not directly tied to the design/manufacturing of the Karma.

Believe me, I interviewed there for a software engineer position a couple of years ago. I'm not sure if it was a leased building or if they bought it, but it was huge. They had just moved into that building (in fact, they were still moving when I was there). I think it was a little overkill for that particular time and phase of their company. For some reason, I had a hunch to not to pursue that opportunity. I was right.

Some of my friends stayed on for another year, and then they left. They didn't like the anxiety of not knowing if their paychecks would bounce (or even be paid) every time pay day came around.
 

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Well of course it's very difficult for any startup to succeed in the auto business. Any such company is more likely than not to fail, even with government help. Don't think that Tesla is out of the woods yet. There will be difficult days ahead for them too, at least as a standalone company.
 

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DOE pulled the mega million credit line ... they were walking dead, same almost happen to Telsa, they were a week or two from BK and then got the 500 million DOE loan
 

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Why the Karma was built

The motivation to build the Karma was to provide an alternative to the Prius for the rich and famous!

http://green.autoblog.com/2012/10/02/leonardo-dicaprio-inspired-henrik-fisker-plug-in-hybrids/

What amazed me during a search for information when comparing Henrik Fisker and Elon Musk is how many successful businesses Elon created and sold prior to Space X amd Tesla Motors. Having a series of profitable business successes certainly helps later efforts. But "making it work" is an Elon quality that keeps him keep going when times get tough.

http://dcurt.is/elon-musks-determination

The key to this is money. If there are enough funds and determination to "make it work," success is possible. In this case, is there a high enough demand for "it" (the Karma) to keep the money flowing? IMHO, not yet and maybe never. If the movie stars are now ordering Tesla Model S, Cadillac ELR, or newer EV or E-REV designs, it will be difficult to find an investor for Fisker Automotive.
 

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The Karma is absolutely gorgeous. I saw my first one in person at a shopping plaza yesterday, and it looked tons better than any video I saw online. And it looked pretty damn nice in the videos.

Unfortunately you take away the looks, and what you have left is not very pretty: a very expensive, impractical vehicle that only people with tons of money to throw around would consider buying. I guess there aren't enough Justin Biebers in the world that were willing to burn $100k on a car.
 

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Every review I read on the cars criticized the design, fit and finish was sloppy and extremely difficult to use technology interfaces. That will doom any car in that price range.
 
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