By on March 13, 2013

Henrik Fisker has resigned from the automobile firm that bears his name, as the company’s future looks to be headed towards an inexorable buyout by a Chinese auto maker.

Fisker sent an email to Automotive News outlining his decision to resign

“The main reasons for his resignation are several major disagreements that Henrik Fisker has with the Fisker Automotive executive management on the business strategy.”

Comments by Fisker CEO Tony Posawatz seemed to confirmed that Fisker was negotiating with a Chinese partner, likely Geely, to take over the auto maker. Fisker is looking for additional funding to help launch their second model, the smaller Atlantic sedan.

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57 Comments on “Henrik Fisker Pulls The Chute...”


  • avatar
    cargogh

    I hope the car continues, but I’m an fairly of ignorant of Fisker and Geely.
    So to me, it is Fisker (wrong-powered and too heavy beauty)+Geely (Chinese copycat crash-unworthy)=fail.
    Too bad, early on, there was not an offering of additional power trains. The Destino sounds sweet, but most any vehicle would with a ZR-1 driveline. I’d like to have seen some Fiskers on the street. If the majority of new 4-door vehicles have tight rear quarters and limited head room, there should be a gorgeous reason for it.

    • 0 avatar

      I saw a Fisker in the wild for the first time a couple of days ago. Here in South Florida, people will buy just about any kind of vehicle as long as it’s distinctive and expensive, so it wasn’t too much of a surprise.

      I’m disappointed I haven’t seen any Tesla Model Ss down here :(.

      It looks to me like the Tesla is a much better thought out car …

      D

    • 0 avatar
      niky

      Geely’s EmGrand received four stars on EuroNCAP. It has two or three models which are four-star equivalent, being five-star on the old CNCAP.

      The company has, in recent years, been outsourcing engineering needs to other companies in an effort to improve its products. A Geely-owned Fisker would probably either be just as good or bad as a Fisker-owned Fisker, or it could be better.

  • avatar

    #1 They could take the body of the Karma and transplant it’s look to the platform of the Model S and have a far superior vehicle.

    #2 I never would purchase a Karma considering the Model S is a far superior car and the KArma is PAINFULLY SLOW. However, its inclusion of a backup generator gives it the same advantage over the Model S that the Volt has.

    • 0 avatar
      th009

      6.3 seconds 0-60 is PAINFULLY SLOW now?

      • 0 avatar
        redav

        Yes, if you believe the internet. Anything with less than 200 hp is undriveable. Engines are expected to generate 100 hp/L. And if your car can’t do 0-60 in under 6 s, you will die when you are entering the freeway.

        • 0 avatar
          blowfish

          My merc diesel’s 0-60 is on the far end of the opposite spectrum. 18 sec? and this has turbo 300, not sure what it takes for the 240d.
          6 secs were considered pretty fast even 10-15 yrs ago.
          Even a vette during the 80s has < 200hp.

          • 0 avatar
            Luke42

            I recently dug out my matchbox cars from when I was a kid so that my 3 year old son can play with them.

            There’s a red matchbox car from the early 80s with 8 exhaust pipes coming up out of the hood, and covered with faux racing bolts. It looks really badass. And it has “300HP” written all over it in big yellow letters.

            LOL

            My minivan is rated at something like 230 HP, and pulls evenly. I’m glad to hear my minivan is 77% as awesome as this fantasy matchbox car. The curb weight for my minivan is 4100lbs, which gives it a power-to-weight ratio that’s competitive with a lot of stock 1970s muscle cars. This is how far we’ve come on the “everything has to be a sports car” absurdity.

        • 0 avatar
          cargogh

          @redav. Completely agree. When merging onto a freeway, I love how those Avalon, Explorer Sport and everything else that can actually hit 0-60 in sub-7 second drivers will be in front of me insisting on merging at 41 mph with no signal. I’m wondering if they are suicidal or just trying to kill who is behind them.
          It is nice to offer a variety of vehicles with extremely capable performance, but to offer it across the board is a waste. As far as safety goes, I know so many drivers that would go ahead and crash before ever accelerating from 0-60 in under 10 sec., and have never experienced a turn at over .75g. The only time this wasted potential is felt for vehicles purchased by this type of driver is during the brief moments it is borrowed by a 16-yr-old. Right before they slam into something or somebody.

      • 0 avatar

        I drove the car…it’s PAINFULLY SLOW – I’m used to driving considerably faster cars. The Model S hits the right spot.

        • 0 avatar
          Kyree S. Williams

          I wholeheartedly agree. From my point of view, the Fisker Karma makes you feel special because of its sexy bodywork and handsome interior, but at the end of the day, you could transplant that body onto a traditional ICE drivetrain (which is exactly what they’re doing) and get the same effect. At the end of the day, the fact that the Karma is an extended-range EV is nothing special. Any one of the major automakers could have done the same thing, probably for far less money. With the Tesla Model-S, the magic is in the way the car operates as well as its looks; you can tell that every single detail was meticulously crafted. It seems suitably detached from the baggage and burden that is Detroit. It feels like a piece of history, like a car that you’ll someday be able to point to and say, “That right there…that’s the car that started it all.” And that, to me, is worth ten Fisker Karmas.

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    I was hoping it’d look like the Venturi Atlantique. But alas, no.

  • avatar
    gslippy

    Fisker doesn’t have anything a Chinese company wants, especially debt. I think they’re done.

  • avatar
    imag

    Just in time! Aston needs a design refresh.

    I suppose it would be too much to ask that Fisker goes back to doing what he does best: design (not engineer, not manufacture, not sell) cars.

  • avatar
    SlowMyke

    That’s too bad, I assume this is it for Fisker. As pointed out above, Fisker has less to offer the Chinese than did Saab, and if I recall correctly, that only got bought up in parts after it wasofficially dead.

    Not that I think electric cars are the way forward, I do think they have a decent future. And with Fisker and Tesla, the US had a good head start on most other countries as far as viable business models and compelling product. Certainly better than the little plug in runnabouts you see elsewhere like Europe. Leaves us Tesla to bare the torch.

    • 0 avatar
      DC Bruce

      I would agree that the US has a good head start . . . in demonstrating the infeasibility of electric-powered vehicles other than golf carts and similar extremely limited-use applications (i.e. as an urban runabout fleet vehicle). Maybe they can give them to parking ticket writers.

      I believe the US is alone in dumping large amounts of taxpayer money into these concepts, so it’s not surprising that we have this great technological lead . . .

      • 0 avatar
        highdesertcat

        The US taxpayer money helped advance Fisker and other EV and battery makers to the technological level where they are now.

        So any failed company that has advanced with money belonging to we, the people, is a better deal than a company that had to file for liquidation without having enjoyed the benefit of taxpayer bonus bucks.

        The Chinese are far from stupid. They are in the process of acquiring manufacturers like A123, Saab, now Fisker, petroleum companies, global oil-drilling ventures and oil refineries, all with the USD$1.3Trillion that they have stashed. They’ve got the market cornered on rare-earth materials and solar panel tech already.

        At some point in the not too distant future, the Chinese will connect all these dots and come up with a viable plug-in electric car, similar to the Volt, that will satisfy the needs of the masses in all of Asia.

        The “inexorable buyout by a Chinese auto maker” is a good thing, for China. The US can kiss goodbye whatever little taxpayer money we ended up donating to the Chinese Fisker cause.

        This is another prime example of why I, and many others, are against bailouts, handouts, nationalization and the gifting of taxpayer money to businesses, manufacturers and other private enterprise.

        It isn’t just the people who work and pay taxes who are affected by these follies of our government. It affects everyone in America when our taxpayer money is wasted on government venture capitalism that benefits no one except a foreign buyer.

        Such wasted money could have been better spent elsewhere in America, on America, and for America.

        • 0 avatar
          CJinSD

          Bah. They’re buying much of this flotsam because the US is becoming a command economy and the progressives in charge will force the public to buy this wasteful garbage in their march towards eliminating the middle class.

        • 0 avatar
          E46M3_333

          The Chinese have to buy SOMETHING American with all the dollars we ship over there. You can’t spend dollars anywhere else. If you run a trade deficit, you have to run a current account surplus, which mean the trading partner buys your assets. Econ 101.

          • 0 avatar
            CJinSD

            The oil markets trade with dollars – for now. When they stop, and they’re working on determining a more responsibly managed currency, the dollar will be worthless.

          • 0 avatar
            Luke42

            And cheap dollars are good for exports. Free market ideology works just as well for currencies ad it does anywhere else.

            If we want more exports, we need a cheaper currency. Like China.

            But, alas, the real picture is more complicated. US manufacturing is are doing great in terms of dollars; the crisis is manufacturing jobs, not the manufacturing business. Technology has allowed us to cut our labor costs, just so long as we pick the right stuff to make. The workers who used to do the work are now lining up for “entitlements”.

            I haven’t figured out what how a capitalist society is supposed to work when there really isnt enough work to go around. Conventional wisdom is that we’ll all just raise our standard of living (on average) and use that to keep busy, but I don’t see that happening now. I’ve clearly got a lot to learn!

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            Luke42, it’s not a matter of you having a lot to learn.

            In America there are millions of jobs that go unfilled and MOST Americans refuse to do that work.

            That’s why illegal aliens and legal immigrants want to come to America, where you are in control of your own destiny. There’s plenty of work to be had and the aliens are not too proud to do the work that needs doing.

            My mom and dad were both legal immigrants from different countries in Europe and they were not too proud to do whatever work they were offered.

            And they started at the bottom of the employment food chain. My parents worked all their lives, until the day they died, clawing their way, rung by rung, up the employment ladder.

            But the philosophy in America today is, “Why work when you can get your money for nuttin’ and your foodstamps for free!?”

            A person who works all their life and pays into the system is entitled to whatever they’ve earned for their toils.

            But the new America hands out freebies to anyone, even illegal aliens, all at the expense of the people who actually toil and pay the taxes.

            Yes, something is amiss in America.

          • 0 avatar
            corntrollio

            “But the new America hands out freebies to anyone, even illegal aliens”

            What benefits are going to illegal immigrants?

            “My parents worked all their lives, until the day they died”

            Ironic that you don’t, as you have described many times.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            corntrollio, did you miss that I built my own house and now help my wife’s dad refurbish homes he buys?

            I just got through with two homes he bought for my grandson who’s getting out of the Marine Corps in June, and another one for my daughter who relocated to El Paso, TX.

            After all that labor, this is my week of well-deserved rest.

            And as far as the bennies go for illegals? They get free ER and medical care because it is the law! They get free foodstamps and welfare checks because it is the law!

            Sounds to me like you’ve got a big chip on your shoulder, bud. Or is it envy? You never told us if you even work at all.

            No lying now. Man up and tell us what you do that makes you so enthralled to support the socialist welfare system that is America today.

          • 0 avatar
            Luke42

            @highdesertcat:

            Illegal immigration can’t possibly be the answer to my real question. The reason is that the work that those folks are doing doesn’t pay a living wage, and doesn’t provide much in the way of a foundation for a career. So, while those folks are technically working, it doesn’t answer my question of how you build a stable society when robots programmed by a few highly skilled engineers are building most-everything.

            I’ll leave the debate about what people who don’t haven’t been granted permission by our government bureaucracy to have a job do and don’t deserve for another day. My sympathies are obvious, but I’m more interested in the big question today, and I know when to quit!

          • 0 avatar
            corntrollio

            “They get free foodstamps and welfare checks because it is the law!”

            No, they don’t. It’s hilarious how much of this stuff you make up (Cash for Clunkers = taxable income).

            And yes, you’ve mentioned you refurb houses while on “disability.” Very well-earned bucks there — you’re not on the dole at all.

            I’ve often found that it’s the people who have benefited most from government checks that are the ones who complain most fiercely about other people getting government checks. As I’ve mentioned before, people who complain about “the 47%” are usually members of the 47% who don’t know that they are members.

            “Man up and tell us what you do that makes you so enthralled to support the socialist welfare system that is America today.”

            What makes you think that I am in favor of or against our current welfare system? I’ve said nothing of that sort. First, I’ve only ever pointed out where you’ve said something that is wildly incorrect or poorly thought out and pointed out what reality is. Second, it is unintelligent and inaccurate to call our system “socialist” — you don’t even know what socialist means. People who often can’t make a cogent argument about policy will often use labels, and I strongly discourage that lazy behavior.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            corntrollio, people who have incurred disabilities because of military service do not get paid a disability.

            They get a percentage deducted from their military retired pay in return for VA access and care, and get that percentage reimbursed to them in the form of a tax-free allowance each month.

            And illegal aliens do get food stamps and welfare payments and free medical care. It’s the law! That’s why the border states are going broke, paying for all the anchor babies that are squirted out here.

            It’s obvious that you live in a reality all your own. It’s easy to criticize but those of us who experience real life know different.

            Believe what you want. It’s obvious by your comments that you are naive, at best. Or are you doing hard time?

            —————–

            Luke 42, illegal immigration isn’t the answer to anything. That’s the problem.

            Before and during WWII thousands upon thousands of Mexicans were invited to come work in America to fill the need for all types of labor.

            One of those guys was the father of Federico, my American-born Mexican contractor.

            Federico’s dad worked all sorts of jobs in AZ, TX and NM, including highly skilled home building during and after WWII. The homes he built are still standing. Quality stuff for the 40’s, 50’s and 60’s.

            And then Uncle Sam thanked them all and told them to go home. Many of them didn’t, and even more others came across to build a better life for themselves in these here United States, since the amnesty.

            One of my sons is married to a Mexican-born illegal alien who came across the Rio Grande when she was 10 years old, and who has since had to become an American citizen because my son was a Commissioned Officer in the US Army.

            Now the illegals have grown in numbers to well over 12 million and hail from all corners of the world.

            Since America is a nation of immigrants and our nation’s creed is “Give us your poor, your hungry, your huddled masses…..” that’s the welcome sign at every border of the US.

            And you’re right. Many taxpaying people are indeed “quitting” to support this failed socialist system where the people working and paying the taxes are supporting everyone on the dole.

            That’s why so many people refuse to go back to work. My daughter’s ex-husband is one of them.

            He is a corporate attorney by profession and hasn’t done a day’s work since he was laid-off when the company he worked for left California and moved south of the border.

            He’s one of the 99’rs. He went from making ~$170K a year to welfare and foodstamps. And he’s loving it.

            Like many, he ‘quit’ because he’s tired of having his wealth ‘spread around’. It’s easier to have all your free time and still collect from Uncle Barack and the ‘crats, who spread America’s wealth around and want to see more redistribution of America’s wealth from those with money to those unwilling to work for it.

            Several of the guys I play poker with have also quit. They moved to NM from NY and NJ, to get away from the taxation and high cost of living.

            A great many Americans share your sympathies.

          • 0 avatar
            corntrollio

            “And illegal aliens do get food stamps and welfare payments and free medical care. It’s the law!”

            No, they absolutely don’t. I’m not even sure why I keep responding to statements as ridiculous as this. All of your “real life” nonsense is say easily refutable based on known facts.

            Anyone who goes to an ER gets stabilized, but they don’t get “free medical care” beyond that.

            Illegal immigrants don’t get food stamps or welfare. That would be against any state law I’ve ever seen.

            It is entirely possible that their American citizen children do, as any other American citizen would in that scenario. If you would like the 14th Amendment to be repealed, please start the campaign.

            Please note that there is no such thing as an “anchor baby” — that is just a term that uninformed people use because they don’t know better. In general, anyone subject to deportation will get deported even if he/she has a minor child who was born in the United States.

            It’s nice to hear about your lazy friends who don’t work. Easier for the rest of us to rake it in, even if they wouldn’t have been much competition with that work ethic.

            It’s funny that, despite the fact that the Obama administration has greatly increased the number of deportations per year to be well above Bush, and despite the fact that many illegal immigrants have left due to the Great Recession, we still have ideologues who don’t know better complaining that Obama has caused many more illegal immigrants to move here.

  • avatar
    Ryoku75

    I for one can’t say that I’m sad to see Fisker go to be honest, their cars were so flawed.

  • avatar
    E46M3_333

    What? You mean a locomotive drive drain is not cost effective for a passenger car? Who would have thought?

    /s

    • 0 avatar
      Dr. Kenneth Noisewater

      Locomotives don’t have batteries and don’t regenerate braking (in fact, they do “regenerate” to brake but instead of recycling those electrons they convert them to heat and radiate it away). The whole benefit from a serial hybrid is to couple a genset that runs efficiently but only within a limited range to a drivetrain that can operate efficiently across a wider range.

    • 0 avatar
      Luke42

      @E46M3_333: “What? You mean a locomotive drive drain is not cost effective for a passenger car? Who would have thought?”

      Three million Prius owners disagree!

      Except that the Prius drivetrain has batteries and the capability to power the drive wheels mechanically, which locomotives do not.

      Locomotives use the diesel-electric drive to converte power to low RPM torque, which is exactly what the doctor (of mechanical engineering) ordered to move a freight train!

      Anyway, the issue here isn’t that its impossible to build a cost-effective high efficiency gas/electric drive train. Toyota had put millions of them on the road, including an plugin version. So has GM, though their numbers are different (and I’ll be happy to debate why all day).

      Finally, what kind of a fool would buy a luxury-performance car to save money?!? That’s not what either the Model S is about, or what the Karma was about. If you want low TCO, you should be looking at reliable small cars. If you want to push the limits of technology, save some gas, and look a certain way while doing it, THEN you’re in the demographic that Tesla is serving and Karma was serving.

  • avatar
    vent-L-8

    a shame the way this is headed, that is one pretty car.

  • avatar
    raph

    Oh Fisker if only you would have went the same route as Ferrari and Porsche – namely a big ol’ honk’n V12 and some sort of mild electric acceleration assistance (E-Nitrous it seems) .

    I really like the wrapper, it was just in need of a power train that matched its/looks.

  • avatar
    mstover

    So, the US Government borrows money from China then gives it to Fisker so as to keep it afloat till a Chinese company can buy it for cheap. In the end, the US Government will continue paying China forever for something China will own. Gotta love circular logic like that.

  • avatar
    redav

    Fisker (the car) deserves to die. I lost track of how many different ways they were known to catch fire. And although folks online say it looks good, besides being distinctive (which =/= looks good), I see nothing to like about the looks.

  • avatar
    Lampredi

    “Henrik Fisker has resigned from the automobile firm that bears his name, as the company’s future looks to be headed towards an inexorable buyout by a Chinese auto maker.”

    Why is it that every automaker for sale these days always has to end up in China of all places?

    • 0 avatar
      imag

      Because, due to the trade gap, they have lots of money to invest. And because they need brands with cachet. And because they are buying engineering and design to accompany their manufacturing capabilities.

      Whether Fisker offers significant value to the Chinese, I am not sure. It is sadly clear, though, that Fisker offers very little to anyone else.

    • 0 avatar
      juicy sushi

      “To be old and wise, you must first be young and stupid.”

      Most Chinese car companies are still at the young and stupid stage. Hence, they buy up all these failed brands no one else will.

    • 0 avatar
      corntrollio

      Remember in the 80s when the Japanese were buying up all kinds of American assets? It’s like that but different.

  • avatar
    bill mcgee

    I have spotted Fiskers exactly twice here in Houston . It’s distinctive enough where if you encounter one and you are the slightest bit car-aware you will notice it . Both times it was in heavy traffic so I couldn’t get as close as I wanted , and both times it was a refrigerator white Fisker, so it may have been the same car . Very attractive in the flesh though .

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      I’ve seen a black one twice (probably same one) here in SW Ohio, and a gunmetal grey metallic one at a car show. I liked the grey one better, but EVERY time I’ve seen them I have to stare.

  • avatar
    oldyak

    The Fisker will always be in my mind what was exciting about the new technology of hybrids.Although I would never be able to afford one there are plenty of other buyers that would take my place.I think the company started to unravel when A123 (the battery supplier) went bankrupt.
    I never read a later post that this was sorted out…..
    It`s our loss in the U.S.
    Too Bad….we had a chance at a U.S. born truly remarkable car.

  • avatar
    Brett Woods

    I was reading about Peirce of the Peirce-Arrow and White, the son of a sewing machine manufacturer who’s dad allowed him to build a car in the corner of his sewing machine factory. Maybe Fisker is like one of these men. Certainly a passionate visionary. I don’t know why they are calling his U.S. loan in so fast. Why do they want to squeeze Fisker to join the likes of Volvo and sell out so quickly to a Chinese multinational?

    • 0 avatar
      Hummer

      I’m sure he didn’t ask for billions of Gov’t dollars to build his cars, He more than likely did what most did at that time, made the parts hisself and at the extreme maybe borrowed money from a BANK at a high interest rate.

      Theres a difference between talent, vision and just getting easy money.
      Fisker had a lot of talent in car design and nothing else, his vision was also extremely messed up, if he had sourced a corvette motor insted of wasting billions of our money doing absolutely nothing but lining his pockets and by large hurting the companies reputation; all in the name of a already tested and failed idea(breath); then he would be golden

      Also the reason that China is a likely buyer is because theres a lot of young and dumb rich people that are willing to give everything they own to have a part of America, little do they know, we don’t want it, and we know it’s a assured failure.


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