Eco-Luxury Vehicle: The futuristic Fisker Karma leads the way in both luxury and state-of-the-art hybrid technology. Karma is the vision of renowned automobile designer Henrik Fisker, former designer at BMW AG and Aston Martin and CEO of namesake Fisker Automotive. The Karma made its debut at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, Mich. The fledgling firm has sold out its Signature Edition and is taking preorders for a plug-in four-door sedan for delivery in 2010.
Fisker calls its plug-in hybrid technology Q Drive. It consists of a small gasoline engine that turns the generator, which charges the lithium-ion battery pack, powering the electric motor and turning the rear wheels.
The Karma is good on ecological, performance and luxury fronts. With a top speed of 125 mph and zero-to-60-mph acceleration in 6.5 seconds, the luxurious and sporty Karma is carving out its niche in the luxury automobile marketplace. The vehicle is equipped with two driving modes -- Stealth Drive and Sports Drive. The Sports Drive does fade the Fisker's "green" a wee, but not enough to raise any cautionary flags.
The Karma would enable consumers to drive a car that is emission-free for up to 50 miles a day if the auto is charged daily. If consumers were to adhere to this routine, it is conceivable that they would only need to fuel up once a year.
For LxM James Rothaar
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