It looks like the problems Consumer Reports experienced with their Fisker Karma are far more widespread than originally thought. If you followed that story, you’ll remember that CR purchased a Karma from their local dealer. Doing some routine testing on the track, their Karma was rendered immovable as the car’s electronic systems detected a battery pack fault.
It was sent back to the dealer, where it promptly had its battery pack replaced – no small replacement job. Now Wired reports that the recall has been extended to 640 Karmas. That should be somewhere around the entirety of all Karmas produced and delivered so far.
The fault is laid at the feet of A123 Systems, manufacturer of the Karma’s lithium ion battery packs. The packs are churned out in Livonia, Michigan, and a fault has been detected within the battery pack cells. Given that A123 is at fault, they will be footing the $55 million bill. Ouch. If you’re counting that is nearly $86,000 a car. Go figure….
The beautiful Karma has proven so far to be beautiful, but absolutely unreliable. Was there any kind of quality control done before pushing it out? Guess not. Hopefully Fisker’s customers are a patient bunch, and that this negative publicity doesn’t damage the Fisker brand name permanently. To show a commitment to quality, the company has launched a quality control “SWAT team” and extended the length of the car’s warranty.
It is now 60 months, 60,000 miles, up from 50 months and 50,000 miles. At this rate, we wonder how many will ever get to that figure. Hopefully the issue can get resolved and Fisker will learn from its mistakes.Later this week, a software update is coming that Fisker says will resolve many other niggles with the car’s software. Then, in New York next week the Nina will break cover. Right now though, in the cutthroat competition between Tesla and Fisker, Tesla looks like it is winning.