Fisker Automotive co-founder Henrik Fisker describes the Karma as a "sedan with a coupe-like appearance." Design highlights include a long hood, short deck, low roofline, wide stance, and pronounced fenders. (Source: Fisker Automotive)
I just went through a similar exercise. However I basically bought the gas version of the hybrid.
The ICE only car is EPA rated for 42MPG highway and from what I was able to see from a number of owners was that this was conservative. Now that I have the car I find that high 30's is not unreasonable even for my short trip city driving.
My normal routien is actually even more stringent that the EPA city driving cycle. However with mild Hypermiling techniques I can push 40MPG. While a Prius might get well over 50MPG doing this, even 38MPG is so close it seems far less practical
One thing that struck me was that it's somewhat difficult to drive the car in a manner that will get this sort of economy. The car does have a real time MPG indicator that is helpful but it could be a lot better. What strikes me is that I think the performance of the new crop of "40MPG" ICE cars could be much better if drivers were provided better tools. I suppose a lead foot remover would top the list.
I suppose that this is a bit of a problem since the companies don't get any credit for it from the EPA. However the potential savings seem obvious. Basically we need to get the driver in the loop.
This same car easily exceeds it's 42MPG highway rating.
It strikes me that the Hybrid has driven the mfg to find new efficiencies in the ICE part of the system. These new efficiencies are now flowing over into the ICE only vehicles.
What "makes sense" depends on what one is trying to do. If you commute a short distance to work, make local shopping trips, and have access to a gas car for the occasional long trip, then even a simple electric with lead batteries "makes sense." If you do long distance trveling all the time, then it does not. It's like asking whether a shovel or a hoe makes more sense.
Hello all. I have a VCR that I'm converting to digital - that will make it so much better! Hybrids are like compact fluorescent lights: we wish we could do LED but we settle for CFL.
I cannot understand the Fisker business model. The car looks nice but it's no performer. The ICE is too small (2.0L, 260 HP, 20 MPG, 0-60 in 6.3 seconds) for the supercar price tag and the battery is too small (20 kWh, 32 miles range) for the average tree hugger. It's also very small inside - subcompact, per EPA rating - yet weighs 5300 lbs. What segment of the market are they targeting? Why wouldn't you go for a Tesla that has much better performance, seats more people and has more range? The Tesla is also not a bad looking car and you can charge it at home or on the road for free.
Remember that a (non-plugin) hybrid still uses fossil fuels or biofuel as it sole power source. The increase in efficiency comes primarily from regenerative braking, which recovers energy that would otherwise be lost to friction and stores it as electrical charge. This is at the expense of having an entire secondary electric powertrain and large battery to haul around everywhere, which is a lot of added weight and expense. This is partly why high-efficiency gasoline vehicles are more than competitive with hybrids.
A plug-in hybrid changes this equation; now one can use electricity as the primary or alternate energy source. Commuters who recharge every night may drive electric-only for weeks or months at a time, only using the combustion engine for longer trips. Of course, fossils fuels may be used to generate the electricity somewhere, but the point-source pollution is easier to monitor and control at the power plant, and as long as electricity for the consumer is less expensive than other fuels, the plug-in hybrid may make a lot more sense economically and ecologically.
My wife and I just went shopping for a new car, and drove the Honda Civic hybrid. We liked it, but the mileage ratings were not significantly better than the gasoline version, for a lot more money. The plug-in version is not available until later this year. We wanted to buy a hybrid to "do the right thing", but it made no sense economically.
True. But this car could serve a market that exists and do so in a more fuel efficient manner. It would be interesting to see what the carbon footprint of manufacture vs ownership for all cars is. I wonder if the gas cars would have less of an impact because of the lack of batteries and solar cells.
I think you have to put the term "eco-friendly" in perspective. How much does a Prius cost, to own or to manufacture? If a millionaire turns up in a Prius, the statement is not "I'm saving gas", it's "I'm saving resources".
The key word is the "Range Extender". Combined with a proper low fuel consuming engine could be the future car on the road. I can imagine than the people will drive electric in the city and electric or conventional outside. By the way "Range extender" is an excelent term to look for in web.
It's a roomy sedan, I saw one up close and it has a legit back seat. I think you have to put this in perspective. The 7 series BMW that this is competing with gets 17 mpg combined. You cannot have luxury without weight, and it takes more power and more gas to move that extra weight. This car answers that dilemma in an incredibly elegant way. If I had 125k to drop on automobile I would definitely buy one of these. But alas, engineers are a bunch of ninnies and never step up to ask for the money they deserve so I won't be able to afford one any time soon.
Lithium-ion battery prices will drop rapidly over the next 10 years, setting the stage for plug-in vehicles to reach 5%-10% of total automotive sales by the mid- to late-2020s, according to a new study.
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