Chinese auto parts company Wanxiang wants to restart production of the Fisker Karma, but will anyone buy it with all the baggage it’s carrying?
We’ll recall that it’s been over a year since the Fisker Karma stopped production, and pretty much everything was put on hold by the bankrupt Fisker Automotive. Thanks to a series of unfortunate events, extreme weather, battery supply problems, and management issues, the company declared bankruptcy in November. A number of companies and investors had stepped up to take control of the company, and it seemed that nearly $200 million in Department of Energy (DOE) loans might never be recovered
The bidding is finally over, and Wanxiang will pay $149 million to take control of Fisker Automotive. True, the price was right, as the DOE will only lose about $40 million, but there were some who didn’t want a foreign company taking over the loan. Any American companies, however, didn’t have the right plans or the right price to convince the DOE to sell. Part of the reason Wanxiang won the bidding this time around was their plan to “immediately” restart production of the Fisker Karma.
Hong Kong investor Robert Li had previously won the bidding, back in October, but the deal was never finalized. Wanxiang and the DOE still need to finalize the sale, which might take a couple months, but the company wants to restart production, using the same Fisker Automotive name and Karma model name, to try and get to profitability as soon as possible. The next model, the Fisker Atlantic, is still a few years away, as Wanxiang wants to focus on the Fisker Karma first, and then move into the formerly-planned Atlantic and Surf models.