2009 Fisker Karma

2009 Fisker Karma

The first hybrid vehicle from bespoke Californian vehicle manufacturer Fisker, the Karma luxury plug-in hybrid sedan, is just a month away from going on sale. The $87,900 plug-in hybrid will feature an innovative twin-motor propulsion system developing 408 horsepower and a monstrous 959 pound-feet of torque, and although it was designed and engineered mostly in the U.S., production of the Karma will take place in Finland.

The same can’t be said for Fisker’s next model as the company has just announced a new North American assembly site for the new car, which is scheduled to go into production in 2012. The second vehicle will be a mid-sized plug-in hybrid sedan with a detuned version of the same powertrain found in the Karma.

Fisker has revealed today that it has chosen the old General Motors Wilmington plant in Delaware, which was formerly responsible for the Pontiac Solstice, Saturn Sky and Opel GT range.

The company anticipates Project NINA will ultimately create or support 2,000 factory jobs and more than 3,000 vendor and supplier jobs by 2014, as production ramps up to full capacity of 75,000-100,000 vehicles per year. Importantly, half of these will be exported.

Fisker will pay $18 million to Motors Liquidation Co. (the old GM) for the plant and then spend an additional $175 million to refurbish and retool it over the next three years.  Most of that money will come from a $528 million loan from the U.S. Department of Energy, already approved to Fisker.