After it bought the remains of bankrupt carmaker Fisker Automotive, Chinese auto-parts Wanxiang laid out plans to relaunch Fisker’s Karma luxury plug-in hybrid.
With namesake Henrik Fisker long gone, those plans included a name change to Karma Automotive.
Which created a bit of a problem.
It would have been a bit awkward to sell the renamed company’s sole model as the Karma Karma.
So months after the announcement of the name change to Karma Automotive, the Karma sedan is getting a new model name as well.
The sedan will henceforth be known as the Karma Revero.
The name is a combination of the Latin “re” and “vero,” which Karma says translates to “truth.”
The renamed maker itself still hopes to relaunch production in the U.S. before the end of the year, reports The Wall Street Journal (subscription required).
Karma plans to begin taking orders for the car later this year, and will unveil the updated version in July or August, chief marketing officer Jim Taylor said.
He said the company is making extensive changes to the car, which was last built in 2012, but styling will remain largely unchanged.
Karma has a deal with BMW for electrical components, but it is unclear whether the company has a new supplier for the range-extending gasoline engine, previously provided by General Motors.
Taylor said Karms is taking great care to validate the Revero before sales begin, to avoid the quality issues that plagued the car when it was the Fisker Karma.
The company is also reportedly considering adopting a direct-sales model, like Tesla Motors.
Tesla has faced significant opposition from franchised dealers, who view its direct-sales practices as a threat to their business.
On the other hand, Karma would have to build a new franchised-dealer network from scratch, as the majority of the former Fisker dealers are now defunct.
Regardless of how it is to be sold, the Karma Revero will be built at a new factory in Moreno Valley, California—not far from Karma’s headquarters in Costa Mesa.
About 100 of Karma’s roughly 500 employees are located at the factory, and the company shipped the original Fisker tooling there from Finland late last year.
All of the 2,500 to 3,000 Fisker Karma sedans built for the 2012 model year were assembled in that country by contract manufacturer Valmet Automotive.
source: greencarreports.com by Stephen Edelstein