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Folks, after four years of anticipation, I am really having second thoughts after reading all of the problems....let me first say, from the minute I put my deposit down the day of the Detroit unveiling in 2008 to the day I put in my order last year, I have been in love with the car, the concept, the designer, etc. However, the problems I have been seeing for months and then of course reading this forum are making me have second thoughts. I really need some encouragement as I drop 120K on a car and then add an addition for more garage space.

On one side, I don't have time to be bothered with a car that needs much attention at this stage in my life. On the other side, I can't imagine how I would feel seeing someone driving the car on the road and not having one in my stable.

In the end, this is a nice problem to have but I would love to hear your thoughts...I am sure I am not unique.:huh:
 

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My $0.02 - I have been using my Karma (SE #67) as a daily driver since it arrived in early January. Yes there have been some glitches, but none that (a) couldnt be dealt with by a "soft reboot" (turning the car off and waiting 2 minutes), and (b) affected the enjoyment of driving the car. I view it as being an early adopter, and expected the issues to arise. And it's worth it to see the looks on people's faces as I drive by... :)

YMMV.
 

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lowpue said:
Folks, after four years of anticipation, I am really having second thoughts after reading all of the problems....let me first say, from the minute I put my deposit down the day of the Detroit unveiling in 2008 to the day I put in my order last year, I have been in love with the car, the concept, the designer, etc. However, the problems I have been seeing for months and then of course reading this forum are making me have second thoughts. I really need some encouragement as I drop 120K on a car and then add an addition for more garage space.

On one side, I don't have time to be bothered with a car that needs much attention at this stage in my life. On the other side, I can't imagine how I would feel seeing someone driving the car on the road and not having one in my stable.

In the end, this is a nice problem to have but I would love to hear your thoughts...I am sure I am not unique.:huh:
I say go for it! It's a once in a lifetime opportunity to be part of the first wave of a new frontier..for many years, the golden age of driving, was man and machine and involvement. I am 50 years old and tired of generic, disposable, utility and dependability instead of style and connection. I have a 69 e type which I love partially as we have bonded over "issues". While the fixes don't come quickly enough and shouldn't be there to begin with, wouldn't you love to have had the legacy of a Chrysler turbine or tucker or even an ev1 as a personal experience? Take the leap. R
 

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You're probably asking the wrong group if you're looking for pure objectivity :)

I absolutlely love my Karma and I'm very glad I didn't talk myself out of it. I'm confident the problems we are seeing are all temporary and resolvable and will prove to be a footnote.

Brent
 

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LonePalmBJ said:
I absolutlely love my Karma and I'm very glad I didn't talk myself out of it. I'm confident the problems we are seeing are all temporary and resolvable and will prove to be a footnote.
Ditto. I've driven my Karma 1700 miles in two months. Love it as my daily driver. Never been stranded.
 

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As a physics and engineering guy, I'm a huge technophile. However, I tend not to buy the first generation of anything. Especially with the fast product cycles these days, the first generation customers end up being beta testers, but you don't have to wait long for the second generation.
 

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I love first gen stuff as much as I dislike waiting for stuff. I know I am not alone here - I've had every iPhone ever made and I've paid far too much than I will admit for a tv, camera, car, computer, etc.
 

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Like Doug, I tend to wait.

This time, I couldn't wait. :D

Alas, I am still forced to wait! :s The Laguna orders will supposedly start painting next month (April) and hence arrive sort of June-ish.

[Edit: also, like the original poster, I am redoing the garage to have room for the Fisker. But it's part of a huge house remodel that I have been intending for ten years anyway. This, too, should start in April; the architects have almost finished the spec book.]
 

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My dealer promised me my Laguna will be build this month!

Luckily I live a lot closer to Finland, so should be driving it in April.
 

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I had the same trepidation. On order for 4 years. My order arrived last week. I was so excited I went to the dealer and literally watched it off the truck and into the service bay at 10:30am. I was told I would have it at 3PM. They called and rescheduled to 5:30, then 6PM, then 10:30 the next day...then 3PM. They admit it was a "software issue". At that point I went out an bought a Maserati Gran Turismo.

The fact that some on this forum consider it a "success" that they haven't broken down is telling enough to me the car is not ready for prime time, care free enjoyment. I love the car and will hate seeing someone else drive it. Hopefully after some time I will be comfortable enough to get one. I told the dealer to call me in a year.

The consumers report fiasco does not help the cause at all. I want to see these guys succeed, but they can't seem to get in front of the bad wave of PR. Simply having superstar owners that can throw this car away is not the answer.
 

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lifespace said:
The fact that some on this forum consider it a "success" that they haven't broken down is telling enough to me the car is not ready for prime time, care free enjoyment. I love the car and will hate seeing someone else drive it. Hopefully after some time I will be comfortable enough to get one. I told the dealer to call me in a year.

The consumers report fiasco does not help the cause at all. I want to see these guys succeed, but they can't seem to get in front of the bad wave of PR. Simply having superstar owners that can throw this car away is not the answer.
To me, it comes down to whether you want to be one of the first to own a new model car and are willing to put up with the inevitable headaches, or you want to wait a year or two for the bugs to be worked out and see lots of that model on the road when you buy in.

I'm clearly in the first category, having taken ownership of 7 cars over the years during their first 1-3 months of delivery: '78 BMW 733i, '88 750iL (V12), '00 M5, '06 M5, '08 Lexus 600iL, '12 McLaren MP4-12C and '12 Karma. Every one of these cars had teething problems except the Lexus, and all of the BMWs left me stranded at least once. But the pleasure of driving a new model/new technology car far outweighed any inconvenience caused by purchasing very early in the cycle.

As for the bad PR, Fisker is subject to the "EV/Volt/Solyndra/DOE/2012 election" problem magnifier. As a result, lots of articles get written predicting gloom and doom over every hiccup. The Hollywood connection can't negate this, but what it does do is build brand awareness that will ultimately result in more sales as the negative press subsides.
 

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I had similar feelings initially, and asked the guys on this forum for advice - one put it like asking a bunch of alcoholics if I should have buy a drink. My situation is a little unique in that I spend most of my time in New York and I am only home in LA one or two weekends per month, which is why I had hesitated on spending $120K on a car that would possibly leave me stranded the precious few days a month I'm back home. Fast forward two months, I've put 1,000 miles on my Karma, and haven't had some of the severe issues others have - no mechanical issues, and few software issues (few with 6.12, a couple more with 6.14.2). All in all, haven't had buyer's remorse once since I've had this car. It's awesome. I'm 29yo, (quasi) single, and am used to dealing with early adopter/startup tech issues, so hasn't been as big of a deal for me if the NAV software doesn't work or the Command Center crashes occasionally.

Bottom line: I really do love my Karma, but completely understand those that need a 100% reliable car and aren't psychologically ready to deal with the issues that come along with a new car/new tech product.
 

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A Maserati might be a better choice if your not home much. Not for the reason you cited regarding reliability but because you would miss the Karma way too much. At one time or another I've owned pretty much every marque out there but have never missed driving any car as much as this one.
 

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SoCalGuy said:
I had similar feelings initially, and asked the guys on this forum for advice - one put it like asking a bunch of alcoholics if I should have buy a drink. My situation is a little unique in that I spend most of my time in New York and I am only home in LA one or two weekends per month, which is why I had hesitated on spending $120K on a car that would possibly leave me stranded the precious few days a month I'm back home. Fast forward two months, I've put 1,000 miles on my Karma, and haven't had some of the severe issues others have - no mechanical issues, and few software issues (few with 6.12, a couple more with 6.14.2). All in all, haven't had buyer's remorse once since I've had this car. It's awesome. I'm 29yo, (quasi) single, and am used to dealing with early adopter/startup tech issues, so hasn't been as big of a deal for me if the NAV software doesn't work or the Command Center crashes occasionally.

Bottom line: I really do love my Karma, but completely understand those that need a 100% reliable car and aren't psychologically ready to deal with the issues that come along with a new car/new tech product.
Thanks. Very thoughtful reply. I've had a Phantom Drophead and one of the first Continental GTs and had some issues. I don't fear the issues as much as fear the company's ability to sustain their business model. They dropped their number from 15,000 to 10,000 and these issues cost the dealer and the factory. When cash is tight, draining the margin off sales already made could make for an early retirement. My fear is not being one of the first owners, it is being one of the last.
 

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lifespace said:
Thanks. Very thoughtful reply. I've had a Phantom Drophead and one of the first Continental GTs and had some issues. I don't fear the issues as much as fear the company's ability to sustain their business model. They dropped their number from 15,000 to 10,000 and these issues cost the dealer and the factory. When cash is tight, draining the margin off sales already made could make for an early retirement. My fear is not being one of the first owners, it is being one of the last.
I heard from sources close to the company that Fisker had approximately $200M in cash at the end of 2011 and was burning about $10M per month. This gives them plenty of runway to deal with the early glitches. They have also booked revenue of over $100M in the 3 months of delivering production cars, with 850 cars delivered to NA dealers. They are now approved for sale in most European countries.

Where startups get in trouble is when they are low on cash and the product is not selling and has fundamental flaws. Then the current investors won't support the company with more cash because they don't want to throw good money after bad. That is not the case here.

Given the positive reception to the car and investor faith in Lasorda and Beattie to make sure the problems get addressed, I believe if Fisker did need more cash they could get it with an inside round, even if they didn't attract new investors.
 

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Lowpue - I've had one of the most problematic Karmas delivered so far (some bad luck to have had a manufacturing flaw), but like the other owners believe its worth it. The newer cars appear to have addressed the panel alignment issues, and consensus from those of us in the tech industry (myself included) is that the software issues will be whittled down in a manner of months. Putting those aside, the car is amazing to drive and to own, and if you take delivery I really doubt you'd regret it. Every new car in this price range has teething issues, as by definition they are complicated and rare, but you'll love being in something green, fun to drive, and dropdead gorgeous.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
siliconkiwi said:
Lowpue - I've had one of the most problematic Karmas delivered so far (some bad luck to have had a manufacturing flaw), but like the other owners believe its worth it. The newer cars appear to have addressed the panel alignment issues, and consensus from those of us in the tech industry (myself included) is that the software issues will be whittled down in a manner of months. Putting those aside, the car is amazing to drive and to own, and if you take delivery I really doubt you'd regret it. Every new car in this price range has teething issues, as by definition they are complicated and rare, but you'll love being in something green, fun to drive, and dropdead gorgeous.
Thanks for the words of encouragement. I agree with you on your points. No question it is one of the best looking cars and I love the technology and there is nothing more than I want to add to my stable. My concern is I don't have the time to deal with issues like this. Mey Porsche (which I plan to keep) is Rock solid reliable with never a problem and big time reliable...I love that in the car. To me it is a real bummer that with all the extra time Fisker had they did not test out the software better. Great write up of someone I know who has a Karma on the software issues. http://craigselectriccar.com/ Anyway, I am still on the fence and watching this forum to help me tip one way or another.
 

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lifespace said:
I had the same trepidation. On order for 4 years. My order arrived last week. I was so excited I went to the dealer and literally watched it off the truck and into the service bay at 10:30am. I was told I would have it at 3PM. They called and rescheduled to 5:30, then 6PM, then 10:30 the next day...then 3PM. They admit it was a "software issue". At that point I went out an bought a Maserati Gran Turismo.

The fact that some on this forum consider it a "success" that they haven't broken down is telling enough to me the car is not ready for prime time, care free enjoyment. I love the car and will hate seeing someone else drive it. Hopefully after some time I will be comfortable enough to get one. I told the dealer to call me in a year.

The consumers report fiasco does not help the cause at all. I want to see these guys succeed, but they can't seem to get in front of the bad wave of PR. Simply having superstar owners that can throw this car away is not the answer.
Maserati's were and are just as bad as the Fisker. I got rid of two because nothing but issues. Hopefully you have some luck with that. I love my Fisker. I have had the glitches, but nothing crazy. It will all be worked out.
 

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In the end it is an emotional purchase - no one can argue it was a rational decission to spend 100k on a beta version car. Some people will want it so badly that they will put up with the quircks (like may of the members here), some other (myself included) will prefer to drive something else until Fisker proves itself. Nothing wrong with either approach.
 
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