Finland is not noted for its car production, but the Fisker Karma is not your average car. This hybrid-powered rival to the Porsche Panamera has just entered production at the Valmet factory, which also happens to build cars for Porsche.
The Karma uses a 260bhp 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine, but not to directly drive the wheels. Instead, the petrol motor is used as a generator to charge the lithium-ion batteries, which send power to twin electric motors, one for each rear wheel.
Together, the electric motors produce 403bhp to help the Karma from 0-62mph in 5.9 seconds. Top speed is 125mph, but more importantly the Fisker has a range of 300 miles between fuel fills or plug-in recharges for the battery pack.
Aimed at Porsche Panamera and Mercedes-Benz CLS buyers, the Fisker Karma is expected to cost around £100,000 when it goes on sale in the UK later in 2011.
Alisdair Suttie - 24 Mar 2011