First Fisker Karma EV arrives in Silicon Valley

July 26, 2011 7:07:27 PM PDT
A new electric car company plans to take on Bay Area-based Tesla in the race to go green. The first Fisker Karma has arrived in Silicon Valley.

The second Fisker Karma to come off the assembly line in Finland was delivered Tuesday to a special customer -- well-known Silicon Valley venture capitalist Ray Lane.

Lane is chairman of Fisker Automotive, which is why he's getting the first one delivered in Northern California. He's also a partner at Kleiner Perkins, the very first investors in Fisker.

The vehicle is a bit pricy for most of us; it costs from $96,000 to $108,000. It has twin 201-horsepower engines, so it can go as fast as 125 miles an hour.

But for those who are jittery about range, the Karma can travel about 300 miles. Lane explained there's also an internal combustion engine, but one that has a very specific purpose.

"You get your electricity from two sources, one from a battery, which is charged by the grid by you plugging it in at night, and the second, an internal combustion engine that when you need it, it burns gas to generate more electricity," explained Lane. "So it's a single power train, all-electric."

"You look at the wood in our cars -- the wood in our cars comes from rescued wood from the California forest fires. It's reclaimed wood from the bottom of Lake Michigan, so everything that we do -- we don't go down and cut down trees -- we actually use the beauty of the environment," said Fisker sales and marketing VP Marti Eulberg. "We use the beauty of the wood that's already there."

Fisker is planning to diversify its line-up to include lower priced models, but details haven't been announced yet.

If you're still having anxiety about running out of battery power when you're operating an electric vehicle, rest assured. Even Walgreen's is jumping has just announced plans to install 800 charging stations nationwide.


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